Popular Lambourn trainer and former jockey Jamie Osborne has certainly seen some highs and lows in his racing career, but he probably didn’t think he’d see so many of them in less than a week.
After Royal Hunt Cup hopeful Lush Life ran a very below-par race at Newcastle having been sent off the 5/2 joint-favourite last Tuesday, Osborne took to social media to record a video expressing his sadness at the ever-increasing volume of nasty messages trainers receive after a horse doesn’t run as expected.
As Osborne points out, trainers certainly don’t deliberately make a mistake in a horse’s preparation and these amazing animals don’t run like machines, but some very bitter punters simply cannot see that and use social media channels and email to directly attack trainers and jockeys for their perceived bad performances having no doubt lost money on their horses.
As if reading such degrading and downright bully-like comments about his training prowess hadn’t been hurtful enough, Osborne woke up at 4AM on Saturday morning to news that a bungalow situated in his training yard, a house staff had been staying in, had caught fire and was heavily ablaze.
The bungalow sits in a part of the facility that has 10 boxes around it too meaning there was a very real threat to equine life as well as an obvious concern for the people at the property.
With Osborne and his team frantically attempting to put out the blaze with fire extinguishers, the wind meant the fire took further hold and become uncontrollable as the agonising wait for the fire brigade no doubt seemed endless.
The flames were getting so close to the horses that they were virtually in their stables, but with the house destroyed the animals were saved just in time.
One of the horses in the line of fire was Constanzia, who after being looked over was allowed to take her chance and run at Chelmsford City on Saturday after the blaze had been put out. To Nicola Currie obviously delighted to have ridden her to a 7/1 victory over odds-on favourite Space Age.
To add to this drama, the yard on Saturday managed to gallop their horses but four broke loose, one person broke an ankle and two ended up with concussions! Whatever happens over the course of this season now, Jamie Osborne will remember this past week for a very long time.