Diane Hill and James Fry again sponsored the Best Turned Out Horses competition on Velka Pardubicka day this year. Diane was the judge, and she would like everyone to know her opinion: It was really good this year, difficult at times to make decisions!!
Each year, Chris Simpson posts his pre-race analysis of the runners and riders in the Velka Pardubicka on his website. As usual, this is a very well informed analysis. In particular, he provides some useful information about British-trained Rathlin Rose, and about the form in France of numerous runners in the race that have run most of their races there. They were only more or less recently brought to be trained here in the Czech Republic.
Trainer Radek Holčák has announced that Hegnus has had a setback and will not run in the Velka Pardubicka. He states that the horse should be fit to resume his racing career in 2020. Hegnus finished second in VP 2018, and would have been strongly fancied for this year's renewal of the race.
I have also read that French-trained Urgent de Gregain is a non-runner. This horse finished second in VP 2017, and would presumably also have been well fancied.
It has already been announced by Josef Váňa senior that 2017 VP winner No Time To Lose is a non-runner.
British jumps trainer Ferdy Murphy, who sent several horses over to run at Pardubice, has passed away. His best result in the Velka Pardubicka was at his first attempt, in 1996, when Irish Stamp finished second to Cipísek. He also brought one of his best horses, Paddy’s Return, over for the Paramo Gold Cup.
Dostihový spolek press release, 02.08.2019
Nathan Rahman is a corporal in the British army who rides in point-to-points and hunter chases, and has also ridden in military races at Sandown and Wincanton. He won the PPORA Novice Riders’ Championship Final this year. Nathan has discovered and enjoyed central European crosscountry steeplechasing in recent months. He has already made two trips to ride at Merano, and he plans to ride in a race for amateurs there this weekend.