When our editors were asked which horses in their disciplines had names with spellings that grated on them, it didn't take long for them to reply...
The Last Samuri
The Kim Bailey-trained chaser might have been the runner up in the 2016 Grand National, but we’re still scratching our heads about that missing ‘a’ in his name.
So much time was spent as a child trying to remember how to spell ‘definitely’ correctly — and then the Brian Ellison-trained 2017 Grand National favourite Definitly Red comes along and throws us back into a state of confusion.
Sometimes we’ve thought a restraining order might be necessary to stop us putting an apostrophe in the name of Katie Jerram’s side-saddle and Retraining of Racehorses (RoR) star. The fact that he was the last horse to be home-bred by The Queen Mother and is now, according to Katie, The Queen’s “favourite”, is just about enough to stop us tampering with the spelling of his name…
Sea The Stars
In October 2009 Sea The Stars made racing history by becoming the first horse to win the 2000 Guineas, The Derby and Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe. He now stands at Gilltown Stud in Ireland, and his name is thanks to his Chinese owner Christopher Tsui, who chose it to reflect his father’s astronomical namesake — and to uphold the Chinese superstition that incorporating part of the mother’s name will bring luck to the offspring (Sea The Stars is out of Urban Sea).
The dressage stallion’s name Romano’s Rafiel (Rubin Star N x De Niro) is something of a tongue-twister as it is — and just to confuse matters he was actually bred at Romanno Stud (although you wouldn’t guess it from the spelling of his name…)
Barel Of Laughs
Funny yes, but also annoying that there’s a missing ‘r’ in the Philip Rowley-trained chaser’s name. He did win the Cheltenham Hunter Chase however (5 May 2017) under jockey Alex Edwards — so perhaps we should let him off.
We can’t help thinking there’s been a typo with the spelling of this Jacqueline Coward-trained pointer. But this questionable spelling hasn’t stopped the former resident at Nicky Henderson’s Lambourn yard taking the coveted Grimthorpe Gold Cup for the past two years.