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PERTUIS. 15 February 2006. Verglas-Lady Killeen.-Grey Gelding. Owner-M.H.O.G.

In recent weeks I have written about some of the brave warriors here at Oakwood Stables that raced in excess of 100 times, the likes of Amir Pasha, Danceintothelight, and Roxyfet, and today it is time to sing the praises of Pertuis, who raced 95 times, and would probably have reached 100, if not succumbing to injury.

Pertuis was an Irish bred horse, who began his racing career in France, with the Mile H. Van Zuylen yard, where he raced 17 times on the flat between September 2008, until October 2010.He was placed on seven occasions, at varying distances between eight, and 12 furlongs, but never got his head in front.

Remaining in the same ownership of Mr Rupert Hambro, Pertuis was transferred to Lambourn, to continue his career with Harry Dunlop. Just 17 days after his last race in France, he made a winning debut for the Dunlop yard, on the all weather at Lingfield, in a 10 furlongs maiden, under Luke Morris.In total Pertuis ran eight times for that yard, wining again at Lingfield in January 2011, and receiving a best BHA mark of 76.

Pertuis arrived at Oakwood Stables via the Newmarket Sales in the Autumn of 2011, to continue his career as a dual purpose horse.He raced in three novice hurdles, with his best effort being a 22 length forth of 16 at Catterick, but the handicapper still thought he was worth an opening mark of 99. His jumping career was put on hold, as he ran his next five races on the flat in the Spring of 2012, but he failed to fire, which saw his mark reduce from 76 to 56.Things did click in to place in the Ladies race at Pontefract in July, where after being held up,Pertuis came with a late run under Becky Smith to win at 40/1. Pertuis was a horse who had to be held up off a fast pace, and that was how he was ridden,from then onward. He was a well handicapped horse,and Becky won on him again at Catterick in August, and then he was second on his next two starts.Back over hurdles at Wetherby on Boxing Day 2012, he finished second after being hampered in the back straight, and 17 days later, back at the same track, he stayed on in to third.

Pertuis gave his owners one of their most memorable day at Ripon, in June 2013, by winning the Lady Amateur Riders Ladies Derby, when having the considerable advantage of Lady Champion Amateur, Serena Brotherton in the saddle.He would place a further three times, before returning to the jumps in November, where back at Wetherby,he was just touched off by the Ryan Winks ridden Hartside, after hitting the last hard.

He was back in the winners enclosure at Pontefract in April 2014, under Graham Lee, and then after finishing second at Ripon in early June, he won his sixth race, 15 days later at the same track. In September, and October he would twice again finish runner up over the jumps at Wetherby, with his next win coming the following April at Catterick. He won again at Catterick in July,but it would be a further eight attempts, and 11 more months until his next win, which came when winning the Ladies Derby at Ripon, for a second time, with Catherine Walton doing the steering on that occasion. Pertuis raced a further nine times, but he was now suffering with joint problems. Unfortunately these problems got worse and on the vets advice, he was put to sleep, so he wouldn't suffer anymore.

Pertuis was a tricky ride, in that he had to pass horses off a fast pace, in order to produce his best, he handled any surface, and won a total of 10 races.Along with Amir Pasha, Dancintothelight, and Roxyfet, he was as tough as they come.

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