U May Cullect Back

U May Cullect Back

Bruce Stewart

30th June 2020

After being injured in 2019, star Southland pacer U May Cullect has been given the all clear to recommence serious work in preparation for the new season.

Owner Tom Kilkelly and wife Julie floated the gelding north to Dunedin yesterday with stablemate Smokie Bander and vet Peter Gillespie did a series of scans on the horses’ injury.

“Peter did the initial scan to see how bad the injury was, a scan mid-term and the final one yesterday. I couldn’t believe the difference between the three scans. Both horses legs are as good as you can get them so I’m absolutely rapt,” Kilkelly said.

Although the signs are good the injury still has to be managed and one of the key components to that is shoeing.

“We have to get that dead right so there’s no pressure on the tendon. Peter is coming down in a couple of weeks to have a discussion with our farrier Snow Devery to show him exactly how it’s done. Snow will only look after U May Cullect (be the sole farrier) so we get consistency.”

U May Cullects road to recovery has taken nine months and Kilkelly has been charged with looking after and exercising him daily.

“He’s been boxed for nine months and wasn’t allowed out in a paddock. We started off walking him for fifteen minutes. Then it went to some walking and some trotting, then at the end it was 45 minutes of trotting a day.”

Kilkelly says the horse looks different.

“He’s really bulked up and they’ve really got something to work on now. They took him out to the beach this afternoon and that’s where he’ll be based from now on. They’ve both had an unlimited amount of lucerne hay so they’ve been living like kings.”

When the Southland race dates are finalised on Friday and the stable will have a clearer idea of when the U May Cullect will return to racing.

“Hopefully he’ll line up down here before he goes to the Hannon on the road to the Cup.”