Veteran horse wins race on 176th and final appearance

Darryll Holland and The Tatling land The King's Stand Stakes race run at Ascot Racecourse
The Tatling won the King's Stand Stakes at Ascot way back in 2004

Veteran horse The Tatling produced a fairytale ending in his 176th and final racecourse appearance by claiming victory at Wolverhampton.

The 14-year-old was priced at 16-1 but won the handicap - the 18th of his career - by a short head.

Trainer Milton Bradley said: "I know it was only a small race, but what a wonderful story. The horse is still a star in our eyes.

"He's been a marvellous servant for everyone involved with him."

Winning owner Darren Hudson-Wood told At The Races: "I nearly cried a second ago. I didn't expect him to be in the first five, to be honest.

"That was incredible and probably justifiable for him to go out like that."

Jockey Richard Kingscote added: "I thought it was going to be a hard-luck story but we got there in the end."

The BBC's horse racing correspondent Cornelius Lysaght paid tribute to The Tatling, saying: "In a sport where many of its athletes are here today and gone (to stud) tomorrow, The Tatling's sheer longevity is astonishing.

"The chance to pass on his genes was never likely - though more's the pity, in retrospect - but since starting his career in 1999, he has never missed a season.

"His weren't long distance races in which a bit of guile and determination will get you through, but sprints over five and six furlongs (1000m & 1200m) where he who dares wins.

"Add into the mix that he was grey in colour and bought relatively cheaply before later winning at Royal Ascot, and you have a classic sporting fairytale.

"The Tatling may not have been as well-known as last week's retiree, Denman, but he was every bit as much a racing hero.