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    Posted: 01/November/2005 at 18:29
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Best Mate tragically died of a heart attack after being pulled up in the Haldon Gold Cup.

The triple Gold Cup winner travelled well in the early stages, but was left behind as the tap was turned on down the back straight and was pulled up by Paul Carberry as the field turned for home.

It quickly became apparent that something was amiss as screens were immediately erected around the son of Un Desperado.

The news was relayed to the crowd of Best Mate's tragic demise and a hush descended upon the Devon racecourse. 

At the business end, Philip Hobbs' classy dual purpose gelding Monkerhostin conclusively outpointed Kauto Star.

Trainer Henrietta Knight had nursed the ten-year-old back to fitness, after a burst blood vessel robbed him of a chance to defend his Gold Cup crown, and he looked a picture of health in the paddock prior to his seasonal return.

He looked good in the early stages, jumping well for Carberry, but he back-peddled quickly and was pulled up.

Knight's husband and assistant Terry Biddlecombe said: "Paul is a good jockey and he knew something was wrong. The only consolation is it was pretty instantaneous and he wouldn't have felt any pain."

Knight has revealed she was the first on the scene when Best Mate tumbled to the floor.

"I have ridden a horse before who suffered a heart attack while I was on board and I have to say this looks reminiscent of that," she said. "The legs go, they wobble and then they go down.

"I was actually on the track where he came down and I was the first one there. I knew immediately he had died.

"As I saw him go down I knew I was seeing a dead horse and I just wanted it to be over as quickly as possible."

He had not raced in public since finishing second in Ireland last Christmas, but connections had reported that all had been well with the 10-year-old in his preparations for his reappearance.

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Best Mate's owner Jim Lewis has confirmed the triple Gold Cup winner will be buried at Exeter - the scene of his tragic death on Tuesday.

The ten-year-old died of a heart attack at the West Country track after being pulled up on his seasonal reappearance in the Haldon Gold Cup.

His death will leave a gaping hole in the world of National Hunt racing, with Best Mate arguably the nation's favourite jumper.

Best Mate's exploits, which saw him win a string of big races in addition to his three Gold Cup successes at Cheltenham, touched the hearts of many.

The celebrations of his ebullient owner Lewis were also a familiar sight after big-race victories and he paid tribute to Best Mate.

"He was a great racehorse - there can have been very few in the world like him," eulogised Lewis.

"He helped us raise thousands of pounds for charity and he made a lot of difference to many people's lives.

"What a pleasure he was to own and how much he meant to me. I will never forget him."

Vets at the course confirmed Best Mate had died of a heart condition on his first racecourse outing in over 10 months.

He will now be buried at Exeter racecourse, where he won on his chase debut five years ago, before taking the 2001 renewal of the Haldon Gold Cup.

Best Mate also pocketed the William Hill Chase at the track on his seasonal return 12 months ago and Lewis feels it is a fitting site for the horse's burial.

He added: "This is where it all began with him.

"He won his first chase here and was never beaten here before today. It seems like the right place.

"This has been a terrible day but I am still very, very proud of him and there won't be many who did what he did."

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Jim Culloty admits he is devastated following the death of triple Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Best Mate.

The ten-year-old died of a heart attack at Exeter on Tuesday, when making his seasonal comeback in the Haldon Gold Cup.

He was being ridden for the first time by Paul Carberry, after Culloty had announced his retirement from the saddle in the spring.

Prior to Tuesday's run, Culloty had ridden Best Mate in 18 of his 21 career starts and was in the plate for all three Gold Cup victories.

The Irishman was left despondent by the tragedy, particularly as he felt the son of Un Desperado still had another Gold Cup triumph in him.

"Obviously, I'm absolutely devastated," Culloty told Sky Sports News.

"To be honest, I thought he had at least two more good years left in him.

"During the summer a lot of people in the press interviewed me, and were kind of saying Best Mate is finished.

"Really, I thought he'd be a live Gold Cup contender again this year but this was very sudden and I'm absolutely gutted. He was a lovely horse."

During his racing career, Best Mate was repeatedly compared to National Hunt legend Arkle and Culloty feels that, despite the two horses shining in different generations, it was fair to mention them in the same breath.

He added: "It's definitely fair to compare him to Arkle. Best Mate would've been trying to beat Arkle's record at Cheltenham this year.

"Arkle was lost through injury and had to be put down, now Best Mate has died. It's a shame it seems to happen to the good ones but that's life and that's racing.

"I look forward to the next champion now but it's a shame Best Mate's career was cut short. He had a couple of years left in him I thought."

Reflecting on the experience of riding Best Mate, particularly given the public adoration for the horse, Culloty concedes it was a wonderful feeling.

Culloty continued: "Obviously riding a horse in a big race, you have your mind on the job and the fact you are surrounded by a packed grandstand has nothing to do with it.

"To describe Best Mate was like driving a Rolls Royce in comparison to driving a tractor. He was the real deal.

"He travelled like a good horse through all his races, he jumped brilliantly, was brave as a lion, as honest as he could be and an absolute gentleman at home.

"He was a really lovely, genuine horse. The kind of horse everyone wants and it's a tragic loss."

yes an horse racing thread people. too many people say the sport is cruel to horses so id like to say my thoughts on what happened today. best mate won alot of people alot of money. the horse is one of the best ever and i cant see another horse ever winning 3 gold cups. it still had a few years left in it. the traininer didnt look too upset. but im sure she will be because she wrapped the horse in cotton wool. she could have made much more money from it but it only ran like 4 times a year.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dani Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01/November/2005 at 18:42
well i use to own horses and i dont think its a cruel sport aslong as they are treated properly when not racing!! and it is a real shame that the horse died...especially when racing!! and it was a good horse...its a shame!!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote admin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05/April/2006 at 19:42

grand national time on saturday and i always do well with predictions (kiss of death lol). now eachway you get money for the first 4 so ill give 4 tips.

1.jack eye. that is my number one pick. the form plays straight into its hand.

2. hedgehunter. done the national before and did very well so horse wont be scared of the huge fences.

3. clan royal. i went for it last year and it came placed and was leading nearly all the way around. got tony mccoy as the jockey too and hes due to break his national duck.

4. therealbandit. richard johnson stands a good chance on this horse which is use to the bigtime atmosphere due to racing loads at cheltenham in the festival.



Edited by Admin - 05/April/2006 at 19:43
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote admin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/April/2006 at 11:59
right i have gone each way on the therealbandit and on the nose with clan royal. i couldnt turn down the omen that is joes edge so ive gone eachway on that too out of sentiment.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Asmodai Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08/April/2006 at 21:31

It was the grand national today?? Anyone know who won?

I used to be a massive horse-racing fan, me and my mate. Went to a fair few races, and it was always massive fun.

I tried to be perfect, It just wasnt worth it
Nothing could ever be so wrong
It's hard to believe me it never gets easy,
I guess I knew that all along...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote WebmasterFF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/April/2006 at 03:04

Some horse named numbersix(insert spanish street here) named after the owners spanish villa address.

Hedgehunter came Second





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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote StaticDoll Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20/July/2006 at 10:52
Sorry to drag this up.

But, I actually work in a bookies - Corals.

Anyway, I don't think it's cruel as such. I would imagine that these horses are some of the best looked after anismals in the country - all you have to do is look at them to see how well feed and kept they are.

However, one thing I don't agree with is the shooting of the horse if it has a career ending injury. Why not nurse the horse back to health and sell it? Sure it won't bring in as much money, but surely there'd be someone out there who wants a horse - just not for racing purposes.

I races with jumps (I should know the technical term but it's early and my brain hurts), I cannot bear to watch a horse fall. This might sound bad but I feel more for an injured horse than I do for an injured jockey.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote admin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/March/2007 at 21:58

Ok no doubt you shall all laugh at me if i don't do well lol. However i shall still give you my Cheltenham festival tips for the first day tomorrow with current odds.

 

2:00

ANGLO IRISH BANK SUPREME NOVICES' HURDLE GRADE 1 (CLASS 1) (4yo+)

Wins Now 11/1

 

2:35

IRISH INDEPENDENT ARKLE CHALLENGE TROPHY CHASE GRADE 1 (CLASS 1) (5yo+)

Fair Along 100/30

3:15

SMURFIT KAPPA CHAMPION HURDLE CHALLENGE TROPHY GRADE 1 (CLASS 1) (4yo+)

Detroit City 2/1 and my banker for the day is this wrestling omen.

4:00

WILLIAM HILL TROPHY HANDICAP CHASE GRADE 3 (CLASS 1) (5yo+)

New Alco 8/1 a good omen that badguy should put money on lol.

4:40

SPORTING INDEX HANDICAP CHASE (CROSS COUNTRY) (CLASS 2) (5yo+)

Spot Thedifference 5/1

5:20 FRED WINTER JUVENILE NOVICES' HANDICAP HURDLE (LISTED RACE) (CLASS 1) (4yo)

Pouvoir 5/1

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote admin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/March/2013 at 13:01
Cheltenham Festival 1st day tips........

1:30 My Tent Or Yours
2:05 Simonsig
2:40 The Package
3:20 Zarkandar
4:00 Arabella Boy
4:40 Une Artiste
5:15 Arthur's Pass

Zarkandar in the big race has won me alot of money in the past. William Hills gave me a ten pound free bet so I put it on that at 7/2 and it's now shorter than that. It started it's career unbeaten for ages and then lost a few due to breathing difficulties. It had surgery to correct it and has now won all three races since it had the surgery. Daryl Jacob has been the jockey four times and won three of them so knows the horse. It's got shitloads of stamina to help with the uphill finish and LOVES soft ground which it is with all the bad weather we've had lately. It's my favourite hurdler horse there is. Paddy Power are offering to refund all losing bets of Hurricane Fly wins that race. That as the favourite is probably the only real rival for Zarkandar so it's worth backing Zarky as chances are if you don't pick up winnings you will get your cash back through Hurricane Fly winning anyway.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote #Heel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13/March/2018 at 19:07
Had a decent day with regards to Cheltenham bets today - one of them thanks to Adders Thumbs Up:

EW 4 Fold - Footpad, Coo Star Sivola, Buveur D'Air, Apples Jade
EW Double - Kalashnikov, Singlefarmpayment
Single - Benie Des Dieux (Sir Adders' tip Smile)




Edited by #Heel - 13/March/2018 at 19:08
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