‘Better than we could have hoped for’: former top racehorse takes to new career like a duck to water

By Catherine Austen and Gemma Redrup

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  • Four years to the day after he won the Grade One Betfair Chase at Haydock, Lostintranslation scored his first victory in his post-racing career with Roddy Stanning when taking the annual Yeomanry Ride at Badminton in Gloucestershire (25 November), organised by the Duke of Beaufort’s Hunt.

    The 11-year-old, formerly trained by Colin Tizzard, is primarily with the Stannings to team-chase and hunt, but when Roddy’s intended mount in the Yeomanry Ride was found to have a “niggle” in a check ligament 10 days before the race, he decided to take “Lost” instead for a school round.

    Roddy, for whom it was a first hunt race success, said: “I’m thrilled with him – he’s taken to a change of career and environment better than we could have hoped for.

    “The plan was just a gentle lob round, but people kept disappearing in front of me and at the halfway point I found myself in the lead. He’s a really class horse and he found it pretty simple. Team chasing, hunt races and hunting are so easy for the quality racehorses, if they have the brain for it, because they are operating so far beneath their potential that they can just enjoy it and have fun.”

    Lostintranslation, who won £420,985 while racing, came to the Stannings after his last run in February.

    “He pootled round a novice team chase in April and took to it straightaway,” said Roddy, whose wife Susannah won the Yeomanry Ride in 2015. “He had the summer out, then did two intermediates [with Team Ride Away] nice and steady, then two quicker ones. He’s had a couple of quiet days’ hunting with the BV [Blackmore and Sparkford Vale] and was a complete gent; he stands, waits, goes in the front, middle or back of the field.”

    On how Roddy came to have Lost in his stable, he said: “We live relatively close to the Tizzards and I help out with the BV point-to-point, where Joe [Tizzard] is clerk of the course. After a committee meeting, I’d seen that Lost had not run brilliantly at Cheltenham in January, and didn’t look as though he was loving racing any more, so I asked Joe what the plan was.

    “He said he was running again that week; he ran again and was’t particularly interested, pulled himself up two thirds of the way round, so I messaged Joe and asked if he was interested in him coming to us to hunt and team chase. We didn’t know anything about what he was like at home – nothing other than what we’d seen on TV, but we picked him up three or four weeks later.”

    Lost’s co-owner Paul Taylor and his family suffered a tragedy in 2015 when his three-year-old son, Charlie Taylor, was accidentally run over and killed by his own grandfather after he crawled under the family car in the driveway at their home in Poole, Dorset. It is thought the boy was trying to retrieve his skateboard when his grandfather reversed the car. A couple of years later, Paul and his friend Richard O’Dwyer bought Lost and opted to run the gelding in yellow and blue silks, to depict the colours of the Minions cartoon characters that were Charlie’s favourite.

    “He’s a lovely horse to have around; we’re very lucky and are very grateful to Paul for allowing us to have him – he keeps in touch and loves hearing how he is getting on,” said Roddy.

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