Tuesday, December 20, 2005

A season too far- The Death of a Champion

'At least he died enjoying what he did best' -the words of trainer Philip Hobbs on his Champion Hurdle winner Rooster Booster, who collapsed and died while exercising on the gallops.
Am I the only one to feel that on this occasion the oft-repeated words we hear on a racehorse's death somehow have a hollow ring to them? Those of us who defend horse-racing against its many critics don't have our job made any easier by the decision to keep in training a former Champion Hurdler- a horse who had achieved all there was to achieve- up to just days away from his 12th birthday. Amid the tributes to a wonderful horse we should not shy away from asking some awkward questions.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It is a real dilemma.
The owner, trainer and stable staff say that "he died doing what he does best and enjoys most".And that he would have been miserable if put out to grass.
There is little doubt that all of them loved him, as did most racegoers.
But as with Best Mate, do humans REALLY know what is best for a NH Racehorse?