Top Gear presenter Richard Hammond had to watch the Hayes Golden Button Challenge from the sidelines last weekend (17 January) as he nursed bruises after falling from a horse.

Richard, 39, was due to take part in the 3-mile steeplechase in Gloucestershire but a fall just days before the race left him on crutches and unable to ride.

He was hoping to ride the same horse as when he went hunting with the Ledbury last April for an episode of Top Gear.

In the show, Richard Hammond learnt to ride to ‘hunt’ co-star Jeremy Clarkson — who was driving a car decorated as a fox.

But the horse was lame so he had to try a new one — who turned out to be a little too fresh.

Ledbury joint-master David Redvers told H&H: “The horse spooked going into the school and Richard fell off and landed on his backside.

“He’s ok though — apart from a bruised derrière he hasn’t done himself much damage.

“He was going to go out hunting with us after the Golden Button but sadly due to his fall he was unable to.

“It was a shame but he still turned up to support and present the trophies which was good of him. The day was a great success.”

The race was originally scheduled for New Year’s Day but because of the freezing weather had to be postponed. On that occasion Richard gamely joined the runners in the on foot version instead.