British ‘Chaser Owner Presents Gift to Horse Charity

More news of charitable largesse from our British counterparts…

Editor’s Note: Kauto Star (left, shown with owner Clive Smith at donation presentation) is a British “National Hunt” horse who is poised on the brink of superstardom. He has already won two legs of the Betfair Million and should he win this year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup, he receives the bonus prize of a million pounds (US $2 million, approximately).

Last week, some money changed hands in England. Money traveled from The Big Horse down to the The Little Guys when Clive Smith, owner of top chaser Kauto Star, presented The Brooke, Britain’s largest overseas equine welfare charity, with a ?125,000 (approximately $250,000 in US dollars) check on behalf of Betfair. The donation is in recognition of the millions of horses around the world that are not as fortunate as Kauto Star.

As Kauto Star prepares for his bid to win the Gold Cup in March, a striking comparison can be made between such prized equine talent and those horses, donkeys and mules tirelessly working in some of the poorest communities in the world. From Afghanistan to Jordan, Kenya to Guatemala, the Brooke’s teams of mobile veterinary units reach the most vulnerable equine animals and provide help where it is most needed.

Clive Smith said: “Racehorses in training in this country are lucky enough to have the best care possible, which throws the conditions experienced by the Brooke’s beneficiaries into sharp relief. It is therefore important that charities such as these remain in the public eye and I am pleased to be associated with such a fantastic cause.”

The Cheltenham Gold Cup, by the way, has 49 horses entered. Kauto Star, who won his last four starts, is on course to follow Best Pal and Desert Orchid as household names in British jump racing, should he win.

“The Brooke” was founded in Egypt in 1934 by a compassionate Englishwoman, Mrs. Dorothy Brooke. She wanted to save ex-cavalry horses abandoned by the British, American and Australian military in Egypt after World War I. From humble beginnings as The Old Warhorse Memorial Hospital, the Brooke has grown into an international lifesaving charity with outreach programs all over the world.

The charity’s veterinary programs reach over 500,000 working equine animals each year in Egypt, Jordan, India, Pakistan and Ethiopia, and through partnerships in Afghanistan, Kenya, Israel and Guatemala, ensuring they are healthy, happy and fit for work–and benefiting the several million family members who are supported by their labors.

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