Defying the law of gravity

Aaron Kuru on Des De Jeu. Photo – Peter Rubery / Race Images.

Cambridge Jockey Aaron Kuru showed his class when he and his mount Des De Jeu took out the ITM Frame and Truss Maiden Steeplechase (3200m) despite falling at Awapuni last Saturday.

Kuru and the five-year-old son of Mettre En Jeu hit the deck after clearing the first fence of the race.

“We thought he wasn’t a bad sort of an animal but after the first fence I wasn’t giving him too much of a chance,” Des De Jeu’s trainer Mark Oulaghan said.

Despite the fall, Kuru maintained his grip on the reins and slid alongside Des De Jeu and managed to jump back into the saddle while the horse scurried to his feet. In one swift motion he was back in the saddle and barely stopped to regain his stirrups, while managing to say a quick comment to the nearby clerk of the course, Kuru had Des De Jeu back in the race and the duo took off after the front runners.

The way Des De Jeu bounced back into the race, you would not have realised that the horse had fallen, showing no fatigue or injury when he challenged the leaders 600m from the finish post. The pair hunted down the leader Gagarin over the last fence to race clear and claim the win.

“I was amazed he [Kuru] got back on as I thought he was gone,” Oulaghan said.

Kuru had shown such emotion when he and Des De Jeu took the win but when he came back into weigh, he was cool, calm and collected like it was just another day in the office.

“It was his (Des De Jeu’s) first start over the fences and he probably landed a bit steep and just went down,” Kuru said. “I don’t really know and can’t explain it as it just sort of happened.”

“I got back on and he drew himself back into the race. He’s got plenty of ability.”

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