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Polar Gunner

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  • #21633
    sberry
    Member
    • Total Posts 1801

    People have said on here before that some of the old flat handicappers should be retired once they reach double figures but should a 15yo still be allowed to run over fences, should there be age limits for horses?

    Imagine the fuss if something happened. Then again it’s not the national so it shouldn’t make the news, at least it can be whipped 11 times after the last if it needs encouraging, according to the stewards at Aintree.

    #402289
    sberry
    Member
    • Total Posts 1801

    And then you have the Highlands National – 5 furlongs less than Aintree, 29 fewer runners, less fences and smaller fences and run in nice soft ground.

    And only the 2 outsiders finish :|

    #402299
    sberry
    Member
    • Total Posts 1801

    Sadly a race too far for him, hopefully it’s not that bad, let those clamouring for change in the GN realise it’s the same for all jumps racing. Start with tinkering or banning the big race and eventually you’ll end up doing the same to the little races.

    #402303
    Miss Woodford
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1335

    2x Pennsylvania Hunt Cup winner Dr. Ramsey made his last sanctioned start at age 16, winning an amateur highweight timber race on the 2009 PHC undercard.

    Young Dubliner was 15 years old when he finished 3rd in the 2004 Maryland Hunt Cup. He also won the MHC in 2002 and the Pennsylvania Hunt Cup in 2003. He finished 5th in the 2004 Maryland Grand National after leading the first 2 miles. At age 16 he ran four times, with two wins, a 2nd and a 3rd.

    The great Cancottage, 3x winner of the Maryland Hunt Cup and New Jersey Hunt Cup, was 3rd in the 1985 Maryland Hunt Cup as a 15yo. He retired after that race but remained active as a foxhunter until 1998, and died in 1999.

    Never Worry, the only mare to win the Virginia Gold Cup twice (1947 and 1949), finished 2nd in the race in 1950 at age 16.

    Going way back George Hakes won the Maryland Hunt Cup in 1901, 1902, and 1907, the latter at age 16. His nemesis Tom Ward won the race in 1903, 1905 and 1906, the latter at age 17!

    I’d think racing older horses would be less dangerous, not more, since they are more experienced.

    #402304
    Bachelors Hall
    Participant
    • Total Posts 1602

    I dare say that the ground was a telling factor in the number of finishers in the Highlands National. An attrition rate that is a generally acceptable commonplace in staying chases run in those conditions.

    Regarding the age thing, different athletes age differently. George Foreman won a world title at the age of forty five which is effectively 15 in horse years. Neil McBain played professional football up to the age of 50 and professional wrestler Terry Funk is still at it at 67 although in fairness, the latter isn’t much of an athlete. So I think it’s all down to the individual. If the horse is still capable of racing and more importantly, still thrives on it, then I don’t see why they can’t hunt around a racecourse.

    http://horses.about.com/od/understandin … an-Age.htm

    Due to your ambiguous posting, I don’t actually get your angle regarding the Grand National.

    #402309
    robnorth
    Participant
    • Total Posts 5950

    Malcolm Jefferson reported that Polar Gunner was struck into, but he was walked back to the unsaddling enclosure which suggests the injury was not serious. He certainly seemed sound as he was walked back.

    In addition all riders and horses returned OK in the Highland National (pedantic note – no ‘s’!). Myself and David Cormack saw them all come back in as we waited for Outlaw Tom. He was none the worse and on viewing the replay it was a blunder rather than a fall. In retrospect Campbell Gillies will probably feel he should have pulled up on Outlaw Tom instead of attempting three out. The idiot who shouted ‘keep going Campbell!’, North I think his name was, should have been directed out by the stewards…

    Rob

    #402350
    cormack15
    Keymaster
    • Total Posts 8979

    Polar Gunner looks great for a 15 year old. I had him as the pick of the paddock today against horses half his age and his runs this season had suggested he retains ability. Why retire him, out of sentimentality?

    #402359
    sberry
    Member
    • Total Posts 1801

    Polar Gunner looks great for a 15 year old. I had him as the pick of the paddock today against horses half his age and his runs this season had suggested he retains ability. Why retire him, out of sentimentality?

    Because he was 15yo which is past it for a racehorse, according to trainers, statistics and the number of 15yos in training.

    He also wasn’t a patch on Synchronised who so many people thought shouldn’t run, out of sentimentality. Harder race, better horse.

    Shorten the GN, make the fences smaller, reduce the field, see what happened in the 3m7f today.

    Not trying to argue, just pointing out the weaknesses of the national debate, remove the hardest race and you then have to deal with the hardest race, there will always be a hardest race left and once you give in you will keep giving in until you can’t give in anymore.

    #402365
    DaveMonk
    Member
    • Total Posts 153

    Polar Gunner looks great for a 15 year old. I had him as the pick of the paddock today against horses half his age and his runs this season had suggested he retains ability. Why retire him, out of sentimentality?

    Because he was 15yo which is past it for a racehorse, according to trainers, statistics and the number of 15yos in training.

    Poppycock…….. if you had started the thread "why didnt Harry Haynes pull up Polar Gunner as soon as he was struck into after the first" you would have a valid argument.

    I would be the first to agree with you if he was running in a higher class race or was miles out of the handicap today. There is without a shadow of a doubt, veterans running without a hope in hells chance of getting round, never mind winning.

    Polar Gunner deserved his place in the field today, was on a feasibile winning mark, and the 3/1 price about him reflected that.

    Lets hope everythings ok with him

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