RACING charities have been hit hard during the Covid-19 outbreak so I’m delighted to highlight the work of one organisation who completely changed the life of a multiple Flat winner.
18-year-old Wavertree Warrior ran seven nine times under the rules of racing, and notched up seven successes for trainer Nick Littmoden.
His last victory coming at Wolverhampton on the 3 January 2011. He also took handicaps at Sandown and Goodwood, so was far from a mug.
The gelded son of Indian Lodge passed away recently at The Racehorse Sanctuary, but boy were his last few hours enjoyed.
The charity got hold of Wavertree Warrior in 2015, when he arrived on a cold, wet and quite frankly miserable day.
But to be honest, it was not the weather that led to Wavertree Warrior being down in the dumps.
It’s fair to say Wavertree Warrior was struggling, and his main issue was his feet, which were in a state and making his life an absolute misery.
The Sanctuary went into full throttle, and set about trying to solve his pain with the help of Liphook Hospital vet Holly Claridge and specialist remedial farrier Richard Lovejoy (not that one from the TV series!).
This was a long process, but in the end their care matched by those at the Sanctuary meant Wavertree Warrior was fitted with a carefully designed clog which made all the difference and allowed him to enjoy life once again.
It’s so important we support charities like The Racehorse Sanctuary.
During his first six months of recovery, Wavertree Warrior was hand-grazed three times a day, then given a limited turnout before getting to the stage where he could spend half a day in his paddock and the other half being pampered in his stable.
Ironically, it’s perhaps the good shape Wavertree Warrior was in that ended his life.
In January while acting the fool and showing off in his paddock, Wavertree Warrior managed to pull off one of his clogs and in doing so broke his foot. The damage was such that the clog could not be put back on.
In the end, it was time to put the old boy to sleep and end his battle with both laminitis and a rotating pedal bone.
But he went out doing what he loved. Just before his last breaths, Wavertree Warrior had his front feet nerves blocked so he could feel no pain at all. He was then allowed to graze happily – something he had been itching to do but unable due to his current state – before he quietly laid down and drifted away.
Earlier during the Covid-19 crisis it appeared The Racehorse Sanctuary might close due to lack of fund-raising opportunities. Racing people rallied around and it has survived. That is how it should be.
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Meanwhile, in other news Simon and Ed Crisford will make history by sharing their training licence at their yard in Newmarket this Flat season.
The BHA recently revealed that two separate individuals can now apply for a training partnership licence. If approved, this will result in a new training entity being created and a joint licence to train being granted.
Both individuals comprising a training partnership are required to meet all the existing pre-requisite criteria covering competency and capability.
In addition, both applicants must complete all the related modular training courses in advance of being eligible to apply.
Simon Crisford told me: “We have had a joint licence approved and I think this is an excellent initiative by the BHA.
“These are going to be challenging times on the back on coronavirus, and I think many handlers will think about pairing up. It doesn’t have to be a father and son or mother and daughter. Trainers could pool resources together.”
Crisford added: “Edward has been a great asset as my assistant and at the age of thirty this is the right time for him.
“He’s got plenty of experience, having had four years with John Gosden, been at the Irish National Stud and with Eoin Harty. We’ll be making entries at Newcastle under the name Simon and Ed Crisford on June 1.”
Crisford added that stable star A’Ali, who landed last term’s Flying Childers and Prix Robert Papin, would be aimed at the Commonwealth Cup and might have an entry in the Pavilion Stakes.