Luckless gelding back on the track
CL 3 HCP: He has been a horse plagued by injury and illness, but not once has trainer Wayne Lawson given up his faith in gelding Blackboard Special.
The horse that was once tipped as the next big thing in Grafton racing as a zippy two-year-old has never quite got off the ground only racing 15 starts in a five year career.
He has had a shoeing issue, a broken leg and a breathing problem, but through it all his embattled trainer has stood by the prized horse.
"I know a lot of other blokes would have put him out to the pony club by now,” Lawson said. "But he loves being a race horse. He loves being in work and he is happy on the track. I can't take that away from him.”
Blackboard Special has not raced since December when local jockey Craig Franklin piloted him to a fourth place behind Country Championships Final qualifier Ferniehirst.
It was the horse's best result in more than two years, but his foot problem came back to haunt him and Lawson was forced to spell the animal.
"He is just one of those horses that is sh*t out of luck,” Lawson said. "During his trackwork and at home he is fine, but when it comes to the high pressure of racing you can see he is in discomfort. He has just had no luck.”
After a long 12-week preparation Blackboard Special is ready to fire back into racing and it is only fitting Lawson has turned to the jockey who has been there every step of the way this year: Jodi Worley.
"Jodi has ridden every bit of work for him since he came back in April,” Lawson said.
"She is just incredible. I think a lot of people don't realise just how much knowledge she has with horses.”
Blackboard Special will take Barrier 11 and carry 63kg.