Monday, December 11, 2023

Oft-injured star horse returns to track – “good boyish faith”


The instructor at Grenfield Eden expects soft caviar in Finland, especially in winter.

Trotting trainer Hannu Korpi managed to headline the start of the year with Hiero Boko, who has become Finland’s number one horse. But when the story turns to the stable’s previous title horse, Grenfield Eden, the tone of the conversation changes. The 9-year-old gelding has been on the sidelines for half a year with a foot injury which in the trainer’s opinion could have been avoided.

– The last two winters, when I stayed in Finland with the horses, Eden was heartbroken in January. Finland’s tracks are often in poor condition in winter. Especially in southern Finland, where frozen sandy tracks can be like running on concrete, Korpi believes.

– Of course, there is a reason for this, the horse could have been released. This is a big and heavy “tank”. In any case, you have clearly observed that the horses stayed healthy when we were in Sweden last winter. I don’t know where Grenfield Eden will compete next winter, but probably at least in Finland, if all goes well.

Hippo has recently opened up the opportunity for competitors to respond to situations via a digital feedback channel, fresh off the trot.

Can it be helpful in future? Maybe direct response is starting to get better?

– This might help. Only time will tell.

To support the criticism, Corvey’s view is what needs to be done in winter to make sandy tracks as horse-friendly as possible.

– Salting, only from the first frost. Tracks should be kept warm and not allowed to freeze. And sufficient surface material should be available as needed.

– I understand that good track maintenance requires money, but it should be a matter of primary importance for hippos and racetracks.

Hannu Korpi has also announced Grenfield Eden for Sunday at Jamsa.

Hannu Korpi has also announced Grenfield Eden for Sunday at Jamsa. Photo: Juho Hemlainen

Grenfield Eden will end his competitive break at Vermo on Wednesday after suffering a foot injury in January. Korpi entered the gelding in a three-kilometer race, with the idea that over long distances you do not need to go to extreme speed right away.

The trainer says that at the beginning of the recovery period, the horse was doing nothing for a few weeks. Since spring, it has been regularly trained and hit the first track after injury only a few months ago.

– Now in summer Eden has been able to swim and has also been able to fly. Yes, it comes back in some sort of condition. The wins might be tight, but I expect a good show and a ranking between 3-4.

Korpi has watched from the sidelines as Grenfield Eden knows how to keep her cool.

– The horse is out day and night and thus gets a lot of natural movement. It can be seen moving really fast in the shelter at the moment.

It is often assumed that horses do not return to their level after an injury. Korpi suspects that one of the possible reasons is that the background forces are not trying to move their wounded disciples fast enough in training.

Eden is doing a lot of exercise. I have good faith as a child that this will still be a successful horse. The most important thing for us on Wednesday is that the gelding remains healthy after the race and we will be able to try again soon.

Next attempt will come soon. Korpi has also entered the Jameson Season race at Grenfield Eden for Sunday.

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