Cheltenham Festival 2018

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Entries & Recent Form

gar du luc055  gar du luc2056

It was great to hear that former inmate Gaur Du Luc is doing well in the showing ring.  He was a recent winner at Hickstead in an ex-racehorses class and is pictured below looking fantastic.  He is looked after by David Johnson's daughter, Lisa and she has done very well with him and all her hard work has been rewarded.  Well done to them all.

We had heard previously how well former recruit Ishandraz was doing in his new career show jumping and we have just been updated that he recently was a winner at the Three Counties show.   Well done to him and all connections who look after him.

One of our former mares, Alikat, was sent to stud earlier this year to be covered by Overbury.  It was confirmed last week that she is in foal so next March/April should see the patter of tiny feet.  Below is a picture of Alikat (on the left) with her field-mate Nee Lemon Left (Brenda) who is in foal to Firebreak.

alikat
Alikat & Nee Lemon Left

Two of our mares, Miss Academy and Canadiane, were sent to stud earlier this year in France.  They are visiting Astarabad who stands at the Croix Sonnet Stud in Touques.

We recently visited the mares to check on their progress and pictured below is the stud farm, a beautiful old building in typically traditional French architecture, together with Astarabad and Martin Pipe.

stud farm

Croix Sonnet Stud

 

astarabad  miss academy and canadiene at stud

Left: Astarabad and MCP and RIght: (l-r) Canadiane and Miss Academy

Pictured below is Ishandraz, owned by Mrs Julie Reynolds and ridden by Miss Victoria Gregg, riding at a recent show jumping competition.

Ishandraz was at Pond House ran in seven hurdle races, winning at Plumpton and being placed several times.  We are glad that he is well looked after and is enjoying his new career.

ishandraz

Ishandraz

Pictured below is Laurel Diver and her new foal born at the beginning of May, a colt by Bollin Eric.  Laurel Diver has proved to be a prolific mare producing such excellent racehorses as Mr Cool, Very Cool and Miss Cool, who won many races between them and all of whom were in training here at Pond House.  We are sure the future is bright for this new arrival.

laurel diver x bollin eric

Laurel Diver and colt

It was great to hear that Strenue won at the finale of the Witheridge Riding Club's Hunter Trial at Blackdown Hills Cross Country Course last week.  Strenue was given a great ride by Holly Clapp.

It is always lovely to hear how are former inmates are doing in their lives after racing and Vikki Sweeney has sent in this lovely picture of three former greats.  Vikki has Wahiba Sands and is pictured after winning on ex-racehorses showing class (left), while Akarus finished second and Royal Predica third.  It is fantastic to see them all looking so well and enjoying life after racing.

Wahiba&Akarus& Royal
Wahiba Sands, Akarus & Royal Predica

Wahiba Sands started his racing career as a two year old when running on the flat for John Dunlop.  He moved to Pond House as a five year old after topping the Doncaster August sale for 105,000 guineas and he went on to prove very versatile by winning under all codes - on the flat, over hurdles and over fences.  He ran a total of 62 times; winning 11 and a total of £270,593 in win and place prize money.  During his second season over fences he beat the great Best Mate by half a length at Ascot.

 

When Wahiba looked to have lost interest in National Hunt racing he moved to Lucy Bridges' yard near Shaftesbury where Lucy spent a year hunting, point to pointing and hunter chasing the giant Wahiba - he stands at about 17hh!

 

Wahiba Sands now spends his days with Vikki Sweeney who worked at Pond House for eight years and continues to ride out when time allows.  During Vikki's time at Pond House she looked after many good horses including Far Cry who took her to Australia, the quirky but talented Challenger du Luc and the gorgeous Cyfor Malta but Vikki always said that Wahiba was one of her favourites and when the time came for him to retire she had a stable waiting.  At the age of 12 he was delivered to his new stable at Netherclay Livery yard near Taunton Racecourse - a course he has never visited.  He was given three months holiday with his new friend, Frisco before starting the long road of being retrained.  After many hours hard work he was making good progress doing grid work so Vikki decided to step his program up a gear and started to introduce some small show jumps.  This was going well until one day when he was jumping over the obstacles loose he decided to hop over the six bar gate out of the arena to make his way back to his stable where he could find food!

 

royal predica
Vikki and Wahiba Sands Show Jumping

 

Picture Courtesy of Martin Hill - www.martinhillphotography.co.uk

Vikki and Wahiba have taken part in some local show jumping clinics and have been competing in some ex-racehorse classes at local shows and events.  He stills gets excited when the horses canter around the show ring together, he hasn't quite realised that he doesn't need to get his nose in front! Aug '06

Here are two pictures of horses that we had at Pond House that have retired to a happy home.  Both Akarus and Royal Predica have gone to the same home and are still in Devon.

seebald

horus

Akarus

Royal Predica

While at Pond House they both ran over the famous Aintree fences in the Grand National and Royal Predica won the Kim Muir at the 2003 Cheltenham Festival among many of his successes during a career that started in his native France.  They have both been working hard re-schooling at their new home and are enjoying the showing season.  Akarus is pictured in a show jumping class and he has also been doing some working hunter show classes.