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Kauto Star retires from racing

Popular chaser Kauto Star has been retired from racing.

Trainer Paul Nicholls announced today (Wednesday 31 October) that the record-breaking 12-year-old would not run again.

The decision was made between Paul and Kauto’s owner Clive Smith to retire the “once in a lifetime horse”.

“We have had nine superb years, but after seeing him in his work these past few weeks we were of the opinion that the time had arrived to retire him,” Paul wrote in his Betfair blog.

Kauto looks and feels as vibrant as ever, as those who saw him at our owners’ Open Day last month would testify to. He was mad fresh that day and continues to be alert as ever and very, very well in himself.

Kauto is signing off in full health. But sometimes you have to listen to your head and your heart — and both told me that retirement was the only option.

“It will be very strange to look out of my office window and not see Kauto’s head and Denman‘s arse sticking out the main two boxes. He has given me my best days in the sport.”

The chaser won 16 Grade Ones — including two Cheltenham Gold Cups (2007 and 2009). He is the only horse to have regained the Gold Cup after having lost it, but was pulled up in his last outing in the race in March, returning to a massive cheer. His future on the track had been uncertain since then.

Kauto Star won the King George VI Chase at Kempton for a record fifth time in December 2011. He’s also won two Tingle Creeks and four Betfair Chases.

Last month Clive told H&H it was a difficult decision.

“It would be absolutely dreadful for anything to happen to him,” he said at the time.

“Everyone asks after him, and most say they want him retired. There’s a lot of pressure and it’s a hard decision.

“He’s an athletic horse and so if retirement was the case, I’d want him to do something active — he’s not the type of horse you could just put in a field.”

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