The latest of our 20 before 2020 has been written for us by Liam Humphrey, one of our owners who has been with The Detainee since the early days as well a keen supporter of our other horses too. It is great when our community can contribute, and share the memories of a great day for the owners, The Detainee, Neil Mulholland and Crowd Racing!
We’ll never know if the enforced stable switch and change of scenery was the key or whether the big fella finally grew into his frame and was ready to be a racehorse. I suspect a little bit of both.
Either way, on the glimmers of form shown for Jeremy Gask there was no doubt that when The Detainee arrived at Neil Mulholland’s in late May 2017 he was a well handicapped horse…he just needed to show it on the track.
He settled in well at Conkwell Grange and was soon schooled over hurdles looking ahead to the future. From what Neil was seeing on the gallops he agreed with the view The Detainee was well handicapped and plans were in place to have him racing by the end of June/start of July.
Entries were made for Chepstow and Brighton on the 4th July and the decision was made to head to Wales for a 1mile 4 furlong 0-55 Handicap.
There was quite a bit of excitement in the Crowd ranks about his chances. Maybe it was due to the switch of yards, maybe it was the glowing reports and photos from Neil’s, maybe it was the fact Adam Kirby was booked, maybe it was because it was a weak looking race, maybe it was just the sheer will of the Crowdies to see this character of a horse fulfil some of his potential?
Seemingly it wasn’t just the Crowdies expecting a big run though. The now (isn’t hindsight a wonderful thing!) very generous looking price of 9/1 chalked up the night before the race didn’t last long. 5 non runners also helped the odds to tumble come race time and The Detainee opened up the 7/2 2nd favourite on the course.
Reports from those at Chepstow were that he was looking fantastic. But he was proving to be a bit of a handful in the paddock with a couple of handlers and wasn’t keen to be saddled! This caused a slight drift in the market out to 9/2 before settling back at 4/1 at the off.
The race itself wasn’t plain sailing either. Out of the stalls, Kirby had to shake the reins and The Detainee got involved in a bit of bumping early on when trying to gain a prominent racing position. After another slight niggle along midrace he began to drop back from 5th to about 8th. Just outside half a mile from home Kirby began his familiar wind up and bumping that you love to see if he’s on your side!
Passing the 3, The Detainee had closed into 5th position and had his main rivals according to the betting ahead and in sight (apart from Don Padeja who was already tailing off at this point). By the 2 pole, The Detainee had made his way into 2nd and was getting the full Kirby drive and bump to challenge the leader Miskin and Dane O’Neill.
Into the final furlong and The Detainee was just edging his nose ahead and stayed on really well once in front to win by a length and a half from Miskin and favourite Miss Tree back in 3rd.
Cue cheering Crowdies and champagne! Patience rewarded and plenty more to look forward to.
The Detainee is still with Crowd Racing, and the Gold and Green Crowd and you can get involved with this lovely racehorse either via joining the Gold and Green Crowd or buying a share via Crowd Racing.