The quirky but popular steeplechaser, who was a huge favourite with racegoers, suffered a fatal injury in the £150,000 Fleur De Lys Chase
Tributes have poured in for one of the most popular horses in training, Master Tommytucker, after he suffered a fatal injury in the big race at Lingfield’s Winter Million meeting.
The 11-year-old fell at the third last fence when creeping into contention in the inaugural running of the £150,000 Fleur De Lys Chase.
The horse, trained by Paul Nicholls, could not be saved after suffering a leg injury.
In an emotional tribute, Nicholls’ assistant Harry Derham tweeted: “I adore this sport but sometimes it can be gut wrenchingly cruel.
“So sad for Tony Fear & Louise Cabble [owners] who brought Tommy into the world and have loved him since.
“Brave & bold he’d have run into a brick wall for you. I’ll always remember you at your terrifying best.Sleep well Tommy.”
Master Tommytucker won six of his 17 races and more than £117,000 in prize money.
Lingfield Park racecourse tweeted: “Our thoughts are with all those connected with Master Tommytucker.”
Grant James Thomas tweeted: “Always said how I love this horse and often described him as my guilty pleasure because you couldn’t not love him… Like all the good ones he had his quirks but that made him all the more endearing…Thoughts are with Master Tommytucker and connections.”
The race was won in a dramatic photo finish by Two For Gold who got the better of Dashel Drasher.
Kim Bailey’s nine-year-old pipped Jeremy Scott’s stable star to take the £78,045 first prize at odds of 10-1 in the hands of David Bass.
After jumping the last with a narrow lead, Two For Gold was headed in the final 100 yards by Dashel Drasher but fought back bravely as the winning post approached and got back up to get the nod by a short head.
Bailey said: “I said to my assistant this morning that we need a horse to rescue us this season and what is the chance of this happening today.
He is funny old horse. He is a quirky individual and he has given the owners a huge amount of fun.”