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Carruthers a wonderful epilogue for Lord Oaksey’s tale

Mince Pie For Starters, Lord Oaksey’s hugely enjoyable autobiography, concluded with the former amateur rider and racing journalist hoping his future enjoyment from racing would centre on the first foal of his broodmare Plaid Maid.

The resultant colt (now a gelding) is none other than Kayf Tara’s second-crop son Carruthers, 13-length winner of the G2 Leamington Novices’ Hurdle at Warwick on 12 January and currently quoted at 12/1 for the Ballymore Properties Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival.

Plaid Maid, by Executive Perk, was, like Carruthers, trained by Lord Oaksey’s son-in-law Mark Bradstock at Letcombe Bassett and won five of her 19 starts. She is due to pay a return visit to Kayf Tara this season, an easy decision to make following the thrilling start to Carruthers’ racing career, which has seen him race four times for two wins and two seconds.

There is little doubt that Plaid Maid’s firstborn has already given his breeder, who races the hurdler in partnership with friends and family, enormous satisfaction and a win at the National Hunt spectacular would surely cap an extraordinary life conducted firmly in racing’s spotlight. The most rousing receptions at the Festival are usually reserved for Irish-trained winners but it’s hard to imagine a more popular result than a victory for a horse owned and bred by one of British racing’s national treasures.