Popular grey racehorse Monet’s Garden is critically ill with a foot infection.
The 13-year-old chaser is currently “battling away for his life”.
Cumbria based trainer Nicky Richards told H&H: “To be honest he’s not doing very well at all.”
When asked the trainer replied that he “wouldn’t give the horse as much as a 50/50 chance of survival”.
“He has more of a battle on his hands than that,” added Mr Richards.
The grey suffered an abscess after winning a third Old Roan Chase at Aintree in October. The navicular bone and flexor tendon became infected and the horse was retired. But despite operations the injury is taking longer than anticipated to heal.
“He’s had three operations in three weeks, it’s not that the infection has spread but they simply can’t close it down. It was a million-to-one chance that he got an infection in that part of the foot to start with,” said Mr Richards.
Monet’s Garden, who has won 17 races from 32 starts including the Old Roan Chase at Aintree three times, has a loyal fanbase in the horse world.