AN ex-racehorse became a real success story at the Hambleton Show at the weekend, winning the novice class, the challenge class and also being reserve champion.

Aura Bora is an eight-year-old horse owned and ridden by Jenna Mason of Westow and formerly trained by Tim Easterby.

At the Hambleton Show at Sutton-on-the-Forest at the weekend, the largest pure equine show in the North, the pair were competing in the ROR - retraining of racehorses - class on Saturday.

In the novice class they won first place, qualifying them for championships at Aintree in August.

The challenge show series also saw them get first place. “That was quite tricky,” Ms Mason said, referring to the course of eight jumps. “But my horse did pretty incredibly. It was the first time we’d done that.”

The horse also became reserve champion - second place among all first and second places in no-jumping showing classes. The pair won rosettes, jackets, John Lewis vouchers and a cash prize.

Aura Bora, a “beautiful big thoroughbred”, was born and bred in America, and was shipped over to Ireland as a foal. As a yearling he was bought by Ryedale trainer Tim Easterby, and he became a racing horse.

However, Ms Mason said his racing career was less than distinguished. “He was the worst and slowest racehorse. I think he came last in every race.”

She bought him from Mr Easterby after they discussed the horse in a pub. At that point Aura Bora was five-years-old.

“I’ve had him for three years but I’ve taken him really slowly,” Ms Mason said. “We did a bit of dressage at the beginning of this year. He’s been amazing.

“His attitude is fantastic. He has a nice movement that the judges really like, and this chilled out attitude.”

She added that their plans for the summer months involve “dressage and showing”, attending shows in Ryedale like the Malton show, Ryedale show and Huby and Sutton. He is also entered into the Lincoln County challenge class in late June.