Source: Racing.com by Karl Kaldawi
Chris Waller’s three-time Melbourne Cup starter Finche has been officially retired from racing, following a tendon injury sustained in January this year.
The son of Frankel had 11 starts in Australia, seven of them in Group 1s, after travelling from France in 2018.
“Finche has been a wonderful horse to the stable, obviously representing us in three Melbourne Cups,” Waller said.
Finche, who featured regularly at Group level, winning the G3 Kingston Town Stakes and placing in multiple G1s, will start his new life with young equine physiotherapist Serena Cox, after his owners made sure he had completed his rehabilitation from injury.
“He had a tendon injury and his owners have been fantastic, enabling the horse to go through a rehabilitation program prior to being rehomed,” said Waller.
“We know Serena well as she works for our physiotherapist Tom Simpson and as fate would have it, Finche was the first horse that Serena met at Chris Waller Racing.”
Cox has been around horses from a young age, and Finche quickly became one of her favourites.
“When I first saw Finche, it was a bit of a fan girl moment. I’d only seen him on TV but to see him in his box and how big and strong he is, just to be in their presence is very surreal,” said Cox.
“I was really interested in the whole reeducation and speaking to Tom (Simpson), he told me all about the rehoming program that Chris Waller does with his athletes, and I’ve seen so many of his horses go to new homes and have such a great life after racing and I just really wanted to be a part of that.
“Finche’s name came up and to be honest I was surprised but he had just finished his rehab process and he was ready to find his new home, so I put my hand up.”
Thanks to Finche’s owners, the flashy chestnut has recovered from his tendon injury and awaits a fresh start at his new career.
“The owners have done such an amazing thing. Speaking to Lee Evison, who did his rehab, he wouldn’t be the same horse today if the owners didn’t invest in his rehab and I think that is just such an important part of the rehoming process,” Cox said.
“It’s really refreshing that the owners really care about the animal and its welfare, and I find that with Chris Waller’s stable as well. It’s all about the horse’s welfare.”
Finche’s incredibly stunning features will bode well for him in the equestrian arena according to Cox, who thinks he’ll make a fine equestrian horse.
“I ride as well, and I was looking for a showjumper and eventer,” she said.
“I’ve always been quite ambitious and have always wanted to compete in some form of show jumping or eventing. So, we’ll see how he goes coping with the whole journey of going in that direction, I would be very keen to get him into a competition at some stage.
“I do love him. I’m in Melbourne for the Spring Carnival now but I can’t wait to go back and see him.”