The word superstar can often be synonymous with the sports world and in some circumstances rightly so. Others such as hero, great and legend also reverberate around such an arena. In some instances they are over used, in others they aren’t praise enough. One thing for certain however is that those words and then some describe champion race horse Kauto Star.
As I’m sure many will know by now of the sad news that one of the most renowned national hunt horses of our generation has sadly passed away. After suffering neck and pelvis injuries due to a fall the horse had to be put to sleep.
The ill fated fifteen year old brought an abundance of happiness and joy to peoples lives, from punters who backed him, the yard that looked after him, the trainer that adored him and the jockey who cherished him. It is without question that this horse will go down as one of the best chasers in living memory.
We may sit and dwell and be sad to consider what we have all lost and although this cannot be avoided I feel it would be doing this great champion a disservice. As many write about what has happened lets focus on what an impact he had on the sport we all love.
With a record breaking five King George VI Chase wins to its name and two Cheltenham Gold Cups to boot this horse did not just have a few good days, he had a bucket load of incredible ones.
Kauto broke tonnes of records in his 41 race career, with a total of 23 wins that included him being the first horse to regain the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
Despite the great achievements he made over longer distances it is easy to forget that this star burned brightly for a while before these achievements. Many people overlook the horses two Grade One victories over two miles in the well regarded Tingle Creek at Sandown. A race that the likes of legends Desert Orchid and Moscow Flyer have both won. What makes Kauto’s achievements in this race even more impressive is that he won the race back to back at the tender age of just five and six years old.
His clashes with stable mate Denman will be written down and talked about for decades to come and wether you were a Denman or a Kauto Star fan you couldn’t help but have respect and admiration for both of them.
A fall in his final race was not the high we hoped the horse would end his career on but it was also somewhat apt in that he was known for trying his all until there was nothing else left to give.
The horse will go down in racings memory as just an incredible animal and is probably one of the most loved French imports since Kronenbourg. But just like the beer itself The Star was simply “A Taste Suprême”
by Rory Paddock
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