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DANCEINTOTHELIGHT. 22 February 2007. Dansili-Kali Owner-Mrs Sian McCain

There have been some tough horses trained here at Oakwood Stables in recent years. Amir Pasha ran 128 times, with 122 of those runs being over the jumps, while the Sedgefield specialist Roxtfet, who is still a long way off retirement, has currently run 101 times over the jumps.Another remarkable athlete is Danceintothelight who ran an incredible 134 times, with 92 of them being over hurdles or fences.

He has had three different trainers, with Kevin Ryan training him for his first nine runs, before Micky took over for the next 80, with Donald McCain then taking over, for the next 45. Danceintothelight first ran as a two year old in 2009 over the extended mile at Beverley, his best effort for the Ryan yard coming at Ayr on his forth start. By his ninth race he was still a maiden, and was dropped in to a seller at Leicester where after finishing third, he was claimed by the late Mr Roland Roper who sent him to Micky.'Dancer' got off the mark at the 17th attempt at Catterick over two miles, with 3ib claimer Kelly Harrison in the saddle, winning by four lengths, off his lowest handicap mark to date of 56.

It was eight flights of hurdles that Dancer wanted though, he made his hurdles debut at Wetherby in October 2010, and the Racing Post comment read, 'led seven lengths clear, and in total command when fell two out.' The horse was obviously a different proposition in this new discipline, and was soon in the winners enclosure at Hexham in November, and again at Catterick in January 2011.In February he took on the big boys in the Scottish Triumph Hurdle at Musselburgh, finishing a very respectable third, earning him a BHA mark of 128.

With a flat rating of only 65, compared to his jump mark, he looked very well treated for his return to the flat, but in eight attempts he couldn't take advantage, but did finish runner up twice.Back over jumps in October 2011, he also struggled with his lofty handicap mark, and it would be 15 races, and 17 months before he got his head in front again at Catterick in March 2013, over jumps, with a much reduced mark of 97.His flat mark had also come down to 56, and in August, and September,he finished runner up on three consecutive occasions

In September 2013, Dancer changed ownership, and was now running in the colours of one of our racing clubs,'Maybe The Last Time,' but the horse was finding it hard to find his form.He was placed on the flat at Redcar in June 2014, and was third at Sedgefield in October, before a good second at Catterick in December. His next win was at Sedgefield in April 2015, off a mark of 86, which suited as Dancer eased home by eight lengths under Jamie Bargary, taking off a further seven.He raced a further 11 times for the yard,placing on four occasions.

Dancer was sent to the Doncaster sales in November 2015, with the hope that a change of yards might freshen him up, and things couldn't have worked out better for the horse, as Donald McCain was on the look out for a safe conveyance for his young conditional jockey daughter Abbie McCain to ride, to gain experience. The combination worked wonderfully as Abbie McCain won twice on him, and placed a further 15 times. In total Dancer won on five occasions for the McCain yard.

It is my opinion that horses such as Dancer, and Amir Pasha, and Roxyfet do not get the respect that their longevity, and courage, and appetite for the game deserve, just because they were not blessed with a 'Porche' engine from birth.

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