Emotions ran high when Mark Of Gold scored for owner Stevie Fisher at Plumpton.
Fisher, the one-time championship-winning farrier, who used to shoe Queen Mother Champion Chase winner Sire De Grugy, has had locked-in syndrome since suffering a stroke in 2014 and his sole means of communication is via his left eyelid.
The former point-to-point rider was at his favourite track to see Mark Of Gold, a horse he owns with friends, win the Betgoodwin Maiden Hurdle to give trainer Gary Moore his 200th winner at the East Sussex track.
Sent off the 8-11 favourite after being well supported, Mark Of Gold was never far off the pace set by Al Muffrin before leading at the second last in the hands of 3lb claimer Niall Houlihan.
Mark Of Gold quickly put the race to bed and crossed the line seven lengths clear of Dream In The Park.
“Stevie Fisher is a great man. He was not only a great farrier, he’s a larger than life character. You wouldn’t meet a nicer man,” Moore told Sky Sports Racing.
“What has happened to him is just terrible but he’s carrying on. He’s an amazing man.
“It was great. I was gobsmacked when he asked me to find him a horse. Fair play, someone was looking down on him because you wouldn’t really pick up a horse for that money (30,000 guineas) and be quite as nice as what he is.”
As for Mark Of Gold, Moore added: “I think he’s improving with racing, so we’ll see what the handicapper does on Tuesday, see what mark he gets and take it from there. “
Tara Iti also struck for Moore with a smooth success under Rex Dingle in the Visit attheraces.com Handicap Hurdle, while Authorised Speed gave the West Sussex handler an across-the-card treble when taking the concluding bumper at Newbury in the hands of his son, Jamie.