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Heathcote and Buffering

By Brad Bishop, Courtesy from Racetrack Magazine Annual Group 1 Review

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It is just so good to have Buffering back in Queensland after a successful overseas trip to Dubai and then on to Hong Kong and then down to Melbourne before making the journey back home. I think that Buffering was glad to be back

Photo: Graham Potter

Story and Photos Courtesy of Graham Potter and

By Robert Heathcote | Friday, June 17, 2016

Multi-premiership winning trainer Robert Heathcote had his star performer Buffering filling a celebrity role at the opening of the new Eagle Farm track on Stradbroke day last Saturday.

The horse put on a show when parading solo and also posed for photos with his fans given everybody the chance to get up close and personal with the current four-time (soon to be five-time) Queensland Horse Of The Year.

Add in the official unveiling of the new Buffering Bar and it was a gratifying and humbling experience for Heathcote, and it was all topped off by the win stable runner Hopfgarten in the Listed Wayne Wilson Stakes. Here Heathcote looks back at a special day with a special horse.

Stradbroke day was really a special day for my stable having Buffering there at the track.

He has run second in two Stradbroke’s and, strangely enough, it is probably one of my most memorable moments in racing was when Buffering was beaten in a Group 1 by Linton that day when the grey flashed up the fence when we were already counting the cash.

I can still see that grey ghost coming through!

But it is just so good to have Buffering back in Queensland after a successful overseas trip to Dubai and then on to Hong Kong and then down to Melbourne before making the journey back home.

You had to see it to believe it when Buffering paraded on Stradbroke day. He walked around that parade ring enclosure kicking up. In fact he did it eight consecutive times ... the highest back kicks I have ever seen any horse do.

The crowd when he walked around doing that gave him a small round of applause. They thought it was something I had trained him to do, but that was far from the case.

I think that Buffering was glad to be back and being the competitive beast that he is I think the juices just got flowing.

You know he was on his best behaviour when he had his picture taken so many times with so many fans but once in the parade ring his competitive spirit came out.


For me personally, and I know this also applies to Buffering’s owners, it was quite a moving ceremony with the Deputy Chairman of the BRC opened the Buffering Bar.

He unveiled a plaque. In a sense, it was almost like acknowledging a living legend.

The bar will always be there ... long after we are all gone so, when he does retire, it really does allow Buffering’s legacy to be remembered and we are grateful that he has been acknowledged in this way.


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