Hartlepool owners name racehorse after town’s bombardment

PROUD: The owners of First Bombardment, the racehorse named after Hartlepool's World War One shelling by the Germans.

PROUD: The owners of First Bombardment, the racehorse named after Hartlepool's World War One shelling by the Germans.

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A GROUP of Hartlepool lads saved up fur-long enough and bought themselves a racehorse – which they have named after the 100th anniversary of the town’s bombardment.

Town pals Stewy Allison, Neil Briggs, Lee Dodgson, Paul Davis, and Kenny Thompson, purchased the thoroughbred horse and have named him First Bombardment in commemoration of 100 years since the German Navy launched an attack on the town in 1914.

FIRST BOMBARDMENT: The racehorse named after the First World War, with a young fan.

FIRST BOMBARDMENT: The racehorse named after the First World War, with a young fan.

The partnership of pals, who have called themselves Northern Hart Racing, bought the unraced yearling from the Doncaster horse sales.

The horse, nicknamed The Bomber, is stabled in Helmsley, North Yorkshire, in the Arthington Barn Yard being trained by David O’Meara, who is well known in the racing industry as one of the country’s upcoming young trainers.

First Bombardment and his jockey will run in blue and white silks – colours associated with the town due to Hartlepol United Football Club’s strip.

The equine is currently going canny on the gallops and should be running around May time.

The horse’s nickname is The Bomber and he has already been provisionally entered in some decent races

Stewy Allison

Stewy told the Mail: “The general background story is that Kenny has owned a few horses with myself and Lee in the past, generally an older type horse that our trainer of choice David O’Meara has improved for us and sold on for a profit.

“We have now reinvested some of this money in a yearling and had the privilege of naming that yearling ‘First Bombardment’ clearly after the town’s historical engagement in World War One.

“The horse’s nickname is The Bomber and he has already been provisionally entered in some decent races and fingers crossed he will carry the hopes of the town throughout the forthcoming season.

“He is currently unraced and could be rubbish or could be amazing, that’s the gamble. He could be Royal Ascot bound!

PRIZE HOPES: First Bombardment is untried, but its owners have high hopes of success.

PRIZE HOPES: First Bombardment is untried, but its owners have high hopes of success.

“He will race in Hartlepool colours and is partially sponsored by The Pantry, in York Road, which is owned by Kenny and his wife.

“We thought initially when we named the horse that it would be an idea to try and drum up some interest behind the horse and almost have him as a town mascot, let’s hope this comes off.

“The dream is to take him to Royal Ascot or one of the big two-year-old horse races and spring a big surprise and bring a big pot of cash home.

He added: “It’s so far so good, according to David the trainer. The horse hasn’t missed a day’s training so far, which could be seen to be rare for a two-year-old.

“We think he has some ability but there is a long way to go before anything is confirmed. He is due an important gallop shortly, and at that point we may know a bit more.”