Honda Fifty
Donald's col       
Honda Fifty (IRE) : 2014 bay gelding
Owner : D. W. Whillans
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                                                                      Far Across
  Honda Fifty (IRE)
  2014 bay gelding
                                                                      Old Vic
                                        Shuil Le Vic
                                                                      Shuil Le Bob

The family

Honda Fifty is an athletic gelding, the second foal of the unraced Old Vic mare Shuil Le Vic. (Old Vic is the broodmare sire of several of 'Adam's' stablemates at Dodlands).
3 year older half brother Cottonvale has won a hurdle for Christian Williams and also been placed in a bumper and numerous times over hurdles in Britain & Ireland.
She had a colt by Dylan Thomas (b 2016) and a colt by Malinas (b 2018).

Shuil Le Vic is the only progeny of bumper / hurdle winner Shuil Le Bob, who is a half sister to 3 Graded Chase winners in Kid Cassidy, River City & Shuil Royale and also to Wild Cane Ridge who you may remember winning several for Lenny Lungo a decade or so ago.

Further back in the family you can also find Welsh Grand National winner Jocks' Cross.

About the sire

Arakan (bay horse, born 2000) was a tough, consistent horse trained by Britain leading trainer for many years Sir Michael Stoute. Arakan raced 24 times, with 19 of these being in stakes races.
After a couple of promising placed efforts as a juvenile, over the following 3 seasons he was just below the best of the milers but won a couple of Group 3s and a brace of Listed races too.
Arakan was retired to stud in 2006 and Ballyhane Stud in Ireland was his home until relocating to France in 2018. Reflecting his racing ability, his stud fee of ~€4,000 made him attractive to both commercially prudent flat breeders and their NH counterparts.
He sired Group 1 flat winner Dick Turpin in his first crop, and later sired another Group 1 winner in Toormore.
Over jumps, his best progeny are undoubtedly still to come (e.g. Captain Guinness, Ardlethen) but multiple winning hurdler/chasers like Vosne Romanee trained by the good doctor, Richard Newland, keep his profile to the fore.

Form Summary

Season 2020-21 outlook
The unluckiest horse at Dodlands during this last, or any other, season. 2nd on his only run in a bumper in 2019-20, last season he had two outing in bumpers and beaten by a nose each time. And these were quite contrasting races - the first was a maximum size, 14-field bumper at Newcastle, the next a 3-runner Carlisle affair.
And you wonder why we had only 4 winners in 2019-20.......

So, still only 6 years of age, do we have one last shot in another bumper?
Probably not, we'd like to think that 2020-21 will be an exciting novice season over hurdles - he has schooled well - around 2 miles, with some give in the ground.

Honda Fifty (stable name 'Adam') was another of our purchases in 2017 at our regular haunt of the Tattersalls (Ireland) National Hunt August Store Sales. 'Adam' is not overbig in stature which is the main reason we were able to acquire this attractive gelding as he certainly looks a racey sort, snapped up for a reasonable bid on Day 1 of the sale.

We sent the Arakan gelding straight to the yard of local handler Gary Rutherford from the sales courtesy of Gillies Transport. And it wasn't long before he arrived back at Dodlands Steading in October '17 - education complete - and then joined his new stable-mates in morning exercise on the Up-the-Middle gallop. Pretty standard practice was followed, and after working on the gallops for about 3 weeks, Honda Fifity was taken out of training to strengthen and mature over the winter months.

'Adam' was brought back into training in early March '18, and caught the eye of all the work riders with his attitude and ability on the gallops.

So, following this second spell in training in the spring of '18, 'Adam' had a spell at grass with a couple of other geldings from the yard.
He returned to the yard in early September '18, and although one of the last of the string to complete his roadwork, he's again settled in nicely to the routine of the stable.
However, a mixture of the prolonged spell of dry winter endured during the winter and a couple of minor niggles delayed his debut run in a bumper till March at Newcastle. Starting at 50-1 in a field of 11, Honda Fifty finished second to a horse that was subsequently sold for £200k.

Season win 2nd 3rd 4th other
2018-19 NH Flat 1  
2019-20 NH Flat   2      
2020-21 Hurdles   1   2 1
Current Season Form
22 February 21 Carlisle 2m 1f Handicap Hurdle (Class 5 0-105) OR102 soft (heavy places) 9 ran (B Campbell (3)) - 2nd  (beaten 21l)  video
Tracked leading group on inner, not much room after 3 out to 2 out, ridden and ran on but no chance with clear winner
This was a much better effort from Honda Fifty following his handicap debut run at Musselburgh a couple of weeks ago. He was boxed in at the wrong time approaching 2 out when the winner (Foster'sisland) made his move but this didn't alter the result.


6 February 21 Musselburgh : 1m 7½f handicap hurdle (Class 4 0-115) OR102 soft 13 ran (B Campbell (3)) -  5th (beaten 17½l)             racevideo
In rear, effort to close on leaders after 4 out, soon ridden and no impression from 3 out
Handicap debut, and it looked as if things happened a little too quickly for our gelding. Getting enough work into the string had been a concern of late given the cold conditions so he may well come on for this run on a more galloping track.


6 December 20 Kelso : 2m novices' hurdle (Class 4) soft 11 ran (B Campbell (3)) -  4th (beaten 9l)                                                               racevideo
Raced freely, tracked leaders, close up after 3 out, soon pushed along, outpaced approaching last, ridden and no extra run-in
Honda Fifty has run a reasonable race without really progressing from his promising debut at Carlisle last month. He's not overbig so it may be that he'll need slightly better ground.


9 November 20 Carlisle : 2m 1f Maiden hurdle (Class 4) soft 10 ran (B Campbell (3)) -  4th (beaten 23½l)                                                     racevideo
Keen early, mid division, some headway to track leading group 3 out, kept on from 2 out but not reach first three
Honda Fifty jumped well on this, his hurdling debut and all told this was a very promising run. The winner, flat rated OR90 Severance is clearly useful and the other placed horses had previous experience of jumping.


Previous Season Form
5 March 20 Carlisle : 2m 1f NH Flat (Class 5)  soft 3 ran (C Whillans (3)) -  2nd (beaten nose)                                                                          racevideo
Led, set slow pace, 3-way challenge from 2f out, ridden and headed but no extra final furlong
Words cannot describe.........


12 December 19 Newcastle : 2m ½f NH Flat (Class 5)  soft 14 ran (C Whillans (3)) -  2nd (beaten nose)                                                              racevideo
Always leading group travelling well, good progress to lead 2f out, ridden and ran green final furlong, ran on well but caught final stride
Oh, the final few yards were agonising to watch as 'Adam' and Sue Smith's Ayre Valley Lad battled it out, with our lad just failing to hold on. The front pair had drawn 8 lengths clear of the third with the rest of the field strung out like Monday's washing. A fair bumper and an excellent performance


5 March 19 Newcastle : 2m ½f NH Flat (Class 5)  good to soft 11 ran (C Whillans (3)) -  2nd (beaten 16l)                                                              racevideo
Held up, raced on outer, ran green early, headway to join leaders 3f out, every chance 2f out, ridden and kept on but no chance with winner
'Adam' delighted us all with a fine performance here on debut. The winner (Crypto) set a strong gallop throughout and was an impressive winner but while the form of this 'newcomers' race is hard to evaluate, the time was 13 seconds faster than the 2m ½f handicap hurdle earlier in the card
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