Beshabar: had been as short as 8-1 for the Foxhunter ChasePICTURE: John Grossick (racingpost.com/photos)
hope Beshabar retired
BESHABAR, winner of the 2011 Scottish Grand National and a leading fancy for the Foxhunter Chase at Cheltenham in March, has been retired after suffering a minor setback.
Injury problems have kept the 12-year-old off since his fifth in the Hennessy Gold Cup in November 2011 and following his latest setback trainer Tim Vaughan has decided now is the time to to bring his racing career to a close.
Quoted on his website, Vaughan said: "His win in the Scottish Grand National was a fantastic day for all concerned and saw Beshabar at his brilliant best, jumping his rivals into submission under Richard Johnson. He also went very close when runner-up in the National Hunt Chase at the Cheltenham Festival that same season, only giving best after the last.
"Following his Hennessy run, he was installed as joint-favourite for the Grand National and my regret with him, one that I am sure is shared by many a National Hunt enthusiast, is that he was unable to line up in our greatest race, as I have never seen a horse more suited to an extreme test of stamina and jumping.
"Beshabar has been a favourite with us for several years, a real character to train and around the yard, to whom myself and all at Pant Wilkin owe plenty. We will shortly decide on how he will spend his retirement, which we will do very carefully as he thoroughly deserves a long and happy one.
"Beshabar would no doubt be a star in anyone's yard and therefore I am exceptionally grateful to Harry and Mrs Findlay, who put faith in me and sent him to our yard originally, Middleham Park Racing and later Diamond Racing, who have had a more recent connection with him."
Beshabar had been as short as 8-1 with BetVictor for the Foxhunter Chase and retires as the winner of six of his 12 races and £218,805 in prize-money.