ARKLE: THE LEGEND
This is the definitive story of the world's greatest steeplechaser - ARKLE. His entire career is covered in this beautifully produced feature which includes nine of his best races and historic color footage of ARKLE on the gallops with his trainer, Tom Dreaper, whose tireless patience and meticulous methods brought ARKLE to world defining form.
Bred by Mrs. Mary Baker on her modest farm in North county Dublin, ARKLE went on to dominate steeplechasing in the mid-sixties, winning many big races including the 1965 King George VI, 1964 and 1965 Hennessy Gold Cups, 1964 Irish Grand National, and 1965 Whitbread Gold Cup.
On the advice of her Irish trainer, Tom Dreaper, Anne, Duchess of Westminster, bought the then unraced three-year-old ARKLE for only 1,150 guineas.
On March 7th, 1964, ARKLE the greatest ever chaser past and present or future, won his first of three Cheltenham Gold Cups, beating decisively on that occasion his great rival, MILL HOUSE, who until then, had been considered invincible. In fact, MILL HOUSE would have been considered the greatest if ARKLE had not been around. To his credit, MILL HOUSE already won the 1963 Gold Cup. He beat ARKLE decisively when they first met in the 1963 Hennessy Gold Cup but that day there were legitimate excuses - he would never again beat ARKLE in any future meetings.
ARKLE was by now an established media star as well as a racing celebrity. People who had never been to the races in their lives warmed to his gallant appeal; ARKLE returned the compliment apparently liking people more than horses. He reacted happily to crowds and cameras without losing his good nature.
After finishing runner-up in the 1966 King George, ARKLE was found to have a cracked pedal bone and never raced again, being formally retired in 1967. ARKLE's well deserved retirement was abruptly cut short when his pedal bone became so arthritic that he was in constant pain. His owner, the Duchess of Westminister was phoned in England to come at once and she instantly flew to Ireland to make the last and hardest decision. When she said goodbye to ARKLE, he could not even stand up to greet her. On the afternoon of Sunday, May 31, 1970, the attending veterinarian walked despondently to ARKLE's stall and administered the injection and the magnificent horse drowsed into the sleep which there is no awakening; he lived just under thirteen years and two months.
A bronze statue of the famous horse now overlooks the parade ring at Cheltenham to commemorate one of the greatest ever horses to grace the Presbury turf - ARKLE had become a legend. A truly fascinating viewing for any racing enthusiast!
|Format(s) Available:||DVD And VHS|
|Category:||National Hunt / Jumps / Steeplechase|