Popular mare Lady Buttons retired due to injury setback

Lady Buttons was one of the most popular horses in training.
Lady Buttons was one of the most popular horses in training.

The hugely popular ten-year-old mare Lady Buttons has been retired after suffering a setback, her connections have confirmed. 

Phil Kirby’s stable star is one of the most popular horses in training due to both her versatility and her colourful owners, and she has enjoyed a fantastic career, winning valuable prizes over both hurdles and fences - including the last two renewals of Doncaster’s Grade 2 Yorkshire Rose Mares’ Hurdle. 

One of her most memorable moments came at Doncaster last December, when holding off the challenges of both Happy Diva and La Bague Au Roi to win a thrilling renewal of the listed Silver Vase Mares’ Chase. 

She would almost certainly have been aimed for a reappearance in Wetherby’s listed Mares’ Hurdle on Charlie Hall Chase day, a race she has won for each of the past two years.

However, her trainer Phil Kirby revealed that she suffered a setback that would have ruled her out until Christmas, meaning her owners has taken the difficult decision to retire her - describing the mare as a 'horse of a lifetime'.

In a statement on social media, he said: “It’s been a significant morning here at the yard and time has been called on a wonderful career. Our horse of a lifetime, and the people’s favourite Lady Buttons has been retired. 

“Keith, Jayne and all of us here would like to thank you so much for sharing her incredible racing story with us. 

“What a legend she has been, and the decision to retire her this morning was typical of her devoted owners, putting their mare first. A small setback meant she would have been on the sidelines until Christmas, and a spring return would not have been in Buttons’ best interests."

He added that Lady Buttons would now begin a second career as a broodmare in the spring;

“With a few months now to chill, her second career now begins in the spring, and we’re delighted that she will remain with us to become a broodmare. We can’t wait to see her in the fields with a foal by her side - one chapter is over, but the next one begins.”

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