Thoroughbreds make for the most perfect team chasers. They are often speedy on their feet, quick thinkers and tough, with plenty of stamina. So it is clear to see why the adrenalin-fuelled discipline is a popular second-career choice for these equine stars. Here are a few who not only shone bright in their first career on the racecourse but are now turning their hooves to team chasing with success.
The 14-year-old gelding, who was trained by Michael Scudamore, won the Welsh National in 2013. The son of Witness Box was triumphant around Cheltenham and finished third in the Grand National on his final run before retirement in 2015. He is now taking part in intermediate team chases with Jade Steinsdorfer. The pair finished team fourth at the Atherstone and produced a clear round at the Berkeley team chase.
The 13-year-old son of Flemensfirth completed the Grand National twice and won the Grade Three Becher Chase at Aintree, under Henry Brooke, in 2015. The gelding, who was trained by James Moffatt, has just started at intermediate level team chasing with his rider, Paul Thomason, who is part of the Team Ride-Away squad.
The Last Samuri
The popular former chaser (pictured with the noseband) enjoyed success when trained by Kim Bailey, finishing second in the Grand National in 2016, under his regular jockey David Bass. He is now based with Pandora Bailey and the pair did the novice class at the Berkeley team chase.
The 13-year-old gelding, who was trained by Ian Williams, finished 11th in the Grand National in 2017 and had total career earnings of over £347,000. He is also a Cheltenham Festival-winning horse, having won the Grade Three Byrne Group Plate in 2014. The son of Shantou is now enjoying open team chases with Joe Stevenson as part Team Ride-Away.
Saphir Du Rheu
The former Paul Nicholls-trained gelding won at both Aintree and Cheltenham, and finished fifth in the 2017 Cheltenham Gold Cup, under Sam Twiston-Davies. The 10-year-old is proving a star team chaser with Charlotte Alexander and has also showed off his eventing prowess, adding a spin around the novice at Barbury Horse Trials to his CV.
At the impressive age of 24, the son of Terimon — who was trained by Nicky Henderson — is leading his team members around novice speed classes and is still loving life in his later years. When in training, the grey gelding was victorious in the Foxhunters’ Chase at Aintree in 2007.
For all the latest news analysis, competition reports, interviews, features and much more, don’t miss Horse & Hound magazine, on sale every Thursday.