The 2008 Grand National winner Comply Or Die has died at the age of 17.
Described as a “tough, genuine and lovable” horse by his former trainer David Pipe, the son of Old Vic had seemed in good health before his sudden death at the weekend.
Comply Or Die had spent his retirement at the home of Timmy Murphy, who rode him to his Grand National win. He shared a field with Well Chief, also ridden by Timmy and trained by David, and Voka Bleu.
He had become a figurehead for the Retraining of Racehorses (RoR) charity, competing in dressage and taking part in the Cheltenham and Aintree RoR parades.
He died in the field on Saturday (7 May).
Timmy, who collected Comply Or Die’s ashes today (10 May), described the National victory as “the best day I’ve had so far”.
“He was part of the furniture at home so it’s very sad,” he added. “He gave me the greatest day of my career, obviously that can never be taken away.
“He paraded at Cheltenham and Aintree and was getting ready to do some dressage in the summer.
“He was a happy horse and he was also very clever.”
Timmy said Comply Or Die, who finished second in the 2009 Grand National, had thrived after his retirement from racing.
“He was easy to do anything with, which surprised me because I took him hunting once and he wasn’t very nice,” he said.
“The dressage seemed to settle him down and he was quite good at it.
“He liked his food, his routine and his company. You get attached to these old boys and he was part of the furniture with us and he’ll still be with us in spirit.”
On his blog on Monday (9 May), David said Comply Or Die’s 2008 victory was the highlight of his own career.
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“He was a tough, genuine and loveable horse and I was delighted to see him looking so well at the Grand National parade of former winners only last month,” David wrote.
“He is a horse I will always hold dear in my heart and I am greatly saddened to hear of his loss.”