Flashing Red, An Extraordinary Horse
When the owners of Flashing Red bought him four years ago, they could never have imagined the spirit and courage that were part and parcel of this extraordinary racing horse. On 13 November 2007, Flashing Red proved to all his younger competitors that sometimes experience and determination can triumph over age. At the ripe age of ten years, Flashing Red was the oldest horse to step out onto the track. Not only did he have to prove his worth in regard to age, but he was the defending champion of the New Zealand Trotting Cup.
As the defending champion, Flashing Red had a fifteen-meter handicap to deal with, over and above catching the frontrunners. The favorite for the 2007 $750 000 New Zealand Trotting Cup, was Changeover, as Old Red, as his trainer lovingly calls him, did not show much potential at the Ashburton Flying Stakes on 22 October, where he came in sixth. But Stu Hunter and Norm Jenkins, owners of Flashing Red, together with trainers Tim Butt and Phil Anderson and driver Anthony Butt, were not ready to give up on him. They all joined forces to get Flashing Red ready for this vital race meeting, and Old Red did not disappoint.
Even though Changeover ended his race in fourth place, he is definitely a horse to keep an eye on. When looking at the caliber of the competition he went up against, the four year old did remarkably well. Third place was taken by Tribute and Monkey King, who came in second, was just not able to keep up the pace to remain in the lead. The New Zealand Trotting Cup is one of the few races that is run over a distance of 3 200 meters, and not only did Flashing Red win here for the second time, but he broke the 1.4 second national record which was held by Yulestar.
Up and till this race Flashing Red has had magnificent career. He has had a hundred and seventy starts, of which he has won thirty-eight races, come in second place thirty-one times and secured twenty-six third places. In total he has brought home $2.09 million, and has just become the third ten-year old to win this race. Not only did he win, but he did so in the most nail biting and memorable fashion. The 2007 New Zealand Trotting Cup will long be remembered as one of the most spectacular races of all times, and the horse that made it happen, the racing marvel, Flashing Red.