Golden Oldies: MONTECRISTO - `He's a bit of a pet for us and has a home here for life when he retires - I'd be divorced otherwise!' Roy Briggs talks to trainer Rae Guest about Montecristo, the horse who came back to life after baffling the vets.
Tell us about him The vets tried all the drugs and nothing worked. He was wasting away and the vets were baffled. Ian Matthews didn't want him put down so I offered to see what I could do. I put him on a very dry feed, plus raspberry leaves which are good for stomach problems. It took us a year, but he got back to full strength and won his first five races for us - the first two with my wife Rachel on board having her first two rides!
What's he like at home? Rachel rides him every day. He scowls at you in his box but he'd never do anything - it's all show. He loves his work, is a wonderful lead horse and hates being beat up the gallops.
Likes Rachel and peppermints.
What would he be in human terms? A moaner who would always go on to do a perfect job.
Describe what he means to you His biggest `win' was coming back to life. He's a bit of a pet with us. If you could get horses like this to train every day, life would be easy. He has a home here for life when he retires - I'd be divorced otherwise!
Trainer/owner Rae Guest
First race Chepstow, August 28, 1995
First win Lingfield, February 10, 1996
Total wins and earnings 18 wins from 80 starts (pounds 112,040)
Best moment Winning valuable 0-100 handicap, Hamilton 1999
Favourite track Epsom (and any with an uphill finish)
Background Originally trained by Ian Matthews, Montecristo, a 27,000gns yearling, developed a rare life-threatening abdominal condition early in his career