The Grade 1 National Hunt Chase hosted at Kempton Park known as the King George VI Chase is a 3 mile course consisting of 18 fences for horses and their jockeys to navigate. The first race took place in 1937 on the right handed turf track, it is now run regularly on Boxing day and is viewed as second only to the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
The two most successful horses on this course have won the race an impressive four times each, Desert Orchid and Kauto Star. Whilst Richard Dunwoody rode the loveable Desert Orchid to two wins in 1989 and 1990, Ruby Walsh has ridden Kauto Star to all four his wins! Horse racing is certainly a premier passion for Ruby Walsh is the reigning Irish National Hunt champion jockey, his other notable victories include winning the English Grand National on Papillon and the Irish Grand National in 2000 (aged 20).
Certainly Kauto Star is in the running to surpass Desert Orchid as the most successful horse at Kempton Park, having won the King George VI Chase four times consecutively. If he wins the race this year it will be an incredible five wins in a row! Paul Nicholls must know the secret to training winners of this famous chase, having trained six champions and he must certainly know how to spot a champion pedigree when he purchased Kauto Star for 400,000 euro’s.
Kauto Star won his first King George VI Chase by 8 lengths in 2006 and successfully defended his title in 2007, 2008 and 2009. Although the King George VI Chase is a 3 mile course, Kauto Star has shown his versatility by winning races of shorter distances between his wins at Kempton Park. His versatility has made him one of the most successful National Hunt horses of the present decade and is described amongst other things as having an extraordinary turn of foot. With 4 major wins in 2006 and 2007, 3 major wins 2008 and 2009 and one major win in 2010 so far, there are plenty of reasons to cheer for those involved with racing star.
Kempton Park is a premiere horse racing venue and a good place for a fun day out. With its winning combination of events and horse racing fixtures that make days at the park exciting. The experience is certainly unique, especially with the potential to witness many fine racehorses that visit this course including the amazing Desert Orchid and of course, Kauto Star.