Point-to-Point trainer Rose Loxton announces the retirement of the prolific winning gelding Gwanako. The 11 year old, owned by The Stewart family, had won a total of over £240,00 in prize money in National Hunt. After a short spell with Richard Barber Point-to-Pointing, he joined Rose Loxton’s yard, and soon took to the change of environment. Giving young jockey Megan Nicholls six Point wins and two seconds, also helped her gain the title of National Novice Lady, leading Wessex Area Lady, and the combination also won the Hunter Chase final at Wincanton in May this year. Gwanako also helped Rose Loxton win the National trainers title, for trainers with eight horses or less.
Rose quoted from her yard in Bruton, “I was unhappy with some heat in his leg, and it was confirmed that he had damaged a ligament in the back of his knee. He had damaged a ligament, when pulling up sore at Kingston Blount last season. The owners were consulted and agreed to retire him, he will now be laid off for the winter, he is going to Gemma Groves home, the groom who looked after him during his National Hunt days when he was at Paul Nicholls yard. The plan is that she can hopefully bring him back into work in the spring for maybe some team chasing.”
It was a double blow for Rose, as within a week, one of her other Pointers in training, Join Together sustained a leg injury whilst working at home. ” It was a freak accident.” Explained Rose. ” He just slipped when turning to canter up the field, he will be out for the rest of the season. One minute we were planning for the Foxhunter at Cheltenham, It just brings you back to earth, makes you approach everything differently.
Needing a companion for Current Event, who is trained at the yard, it was decided that the Sadler’s Wells sired gelding, Prospect Wells, would be transferred from Jack Barber’s yard. “This nine year old gelding has been off the track for 18 months with leg problems. He had run really well in National Hunt winning a Novice Chase. We are really excited to see what he can bring to Pointing.” quoted Rose.
With Megan Nicholls now turning to Flat racing, it looks highly likely that two young male jockey’s working at Ditcheat, Stan Sheppard who has come through the pony racing ranks, and James King who won his first Point-to-Point on Presentandcorrect at Lockinge in 2013, will have the opportunity to take on the rides.