Grassroots eventer makes miraculous comeback from freak accident to win

  • BARELY four months ago, Rebecca Wood was bracing herself for the possibility that her partner of 12 years – and the winner of BE90 section O at Shelford Manor (2), Notts – On The Buzz, might have to be put down.

    In May, the gelding – who was bred by Rebecca’s mother out of her thoroughbred mare and by the coloured pony stallion Honeypot Sporran – was so poorly that vets were doubtful he would pull through.

    “It all started when he caught a pole between his front legs during a jumping lesson,” explained Rebecca. “We didn’t really think anything of it at the time, but soon after he began to have problems swallowing. The vets initially thought the pole incident was a coincidence and suspected he had grass sickness, then a neurological condition was mentioned.”

    It wasn’t until Rebecca insisted on an X-ray of the gelding’s jaw that the vets discovered a small fracture.

    “I spent weeks cutting up hay for him so that he could eat – he wasn’t digesting food properly, which was leading to problems in itself, but once he started eating properly he picked up and I was able to start riding him in a hackamore.”

    Since their comeback, the pair has enjoyed a remarkable BE90 run, finishing sixth at Aston-le-Walls (4) at the beginning of August and following this up with a win at the Aspen Cooling Ltd Solihull (2) before their victory here.

    “The only tell-tale sign now is a lump on his jaw – otherwise, it’s like nothing ever happened,” said Rebecca.

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