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The racing career of a horse, except in exceptional circumstances is a very short one, and another era comes to a close, as four of our team find age catching up with them. All four horses have been found excellent retirement homes, and we are certain they will be loved, and cared for, for the rest of their days.

Silver Tassie had already ran in 24 hurdles or chases when arriving from Ireland in the autumn of 2015, with a best (Irish) official rating of 135. He spent the majority of his career with us competing in Grade 2, or Grade 3 races, placing on several occasions. He only won once for us due to his high handicap mark, which never really came down because of his consistency.

Blue Hussar joined us in November 2014 from the yard of Aiden O'Brien, where he had been placed in a Listed race, and was rated 105. He raced for us on 41 occasions, winning three times over hurdles, and twice on the flat. The most treasured memory he gave us was at York racecourse on September 10th, 2017, when he came home a three lengths winner under P J McDonald, over the extended two miles, off a a mark of 79.

Russian Royale has been a much loved resident since arriving in November 2014, she had already won two of her 13 starts for her previous trainer on the flat. Over the next seven seasons she ran on 61 occasions, which included 19 flat races, and 42 over hurdles. She is a very tough mare who always preferred top of the ground, and was often ridden by our stable apprentices, and conditional jockeys, giving them invaluable experience.

The above three have all retired because age has finally caught up with them, but Swinton Diamond has had to retire because of injury. He is 10 years old, so is officially a veteran, but he only raced on 20 occasions, with injury continuously blighting his career, He arrived at the yard in January 2017, having failed to win in six starts, but won a hurdle, and a chase for us, from his 14 starts.

All of these horses have provided very special memories for the many people connected to them, so lets hope they all get the long and healthy retirement they deserve.

To keep up to date with all the latest happenings at Oakwood Stables, and Sharp Hill, click on 'NEWS' at www.mickyhammondracing.

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We send one to York, where the going at the time of writing is described as good, good to soft in places, and then in the evening we have two at Market Rasen, where the ground is also good, good to so


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