Racing's Craziest Moments

The Races - Caitlin O'Sullivan
13 October 2019
Jocks, thoroughbreds and speed - there’s bound to be a few crazy moments in this sport of ours! Check out these pearlers that really have to be seen to be believed: 
Aaron Kuru remounts horse to win steeplechase
How can we not start with our very own - jockey Aaron Kuru and his ride Des De Jeu. The horse stumbled at the first fence of a 3200m steeplechase event at Awapuni Racecourse. Kuru slid alongside the gelding, before remounting as the horse found his feet. If this display or horsemanship wasn’t enough already, the pair went on to WIN the event. 
Lester Piggott ‘borrows’ whip 
During the running of the 1979 Grand Prix De Deauville, one of the greatest jocks of all time, Lester Piggott, decided he could put fellow jockey Alain Lequex’s whip to better use, after losing his own. Renowned for his brilliant hands and superb timing, Piggott reached over to take Lequex’s whip and use it on his own mount. The usually very serious Lester couldn’t help but crack a smile when questioned about the incident. The stipes, on the other hand, didn’t find it so funny, handing out a 20-day suspension for the act. 
Andrew Payne switches mount mid-race
It was like a scene out of a western movie when a young Andrew Payne finished a race at Sandown on a different horse to the one he started on! Payne’s original mount, Hon Kwok Star, collided with competitor Cogitate coming into the home straight. While Cogitate’s rider hit the deck, Payne’s quick thinking (or sheer luck) found him in Cogitate’s empty saddle, in which he finished the race in. Neither jockeys nor horses suffered any serious injury.   
Utter chaos at Castera Verduzan 
If you think Trentham Racecourse’s Figure 8 course takes some navigation, you’ve seen nothing yet! In a race at Castera Verduzan (France), there were horses left, right and centre when the field headed in four different directions around a minute into the running. Only two jocks managed to navigate the course correctly - albeit not without a few hairy moments. While no one in our office can speak French, it sounded as though the race caller was just as confused as the jocks. 

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