With the proliferation of cute and funny animal memes and video montages, animals are at the forefront of the public imagination like never before, despite human activity continuing to decimate their natural habitats.
Perhaps it is for this reason that people like to turn to domesticated and tamed animals, which fit more into their idea of what an animal should behave like and represent.
Horses delicately tread the line in this regard, able to show incredible acts of kindness and loyalty to humans, while still maintaining that deeply ingrained wild streak. These are the unique attributes that mean they have so many admirers around the world.
In this article, we pick out the ten most famous long noses of all time, with some shooting to fame on the racetrack and others making it big in Hollywood or on the small screen.
Whether you are in the US, Ireland, the UK, Arab nations or down in Australia, horses earn a special place in people’s hearts, especially when a particular racehorse goes on a winning spree, which sports bettors can ride on the back of.
That was most certainly the case with Irish thoroughbred Red Rum, who brought thousands of Irish racing fans to UK racetracks in the 70s, as the horse went on to claim an unbelievable three Grand National titles as well as a Scottish National crown.
Great Irish horses that follow in Red Rum’s hoof prints today are Ghaiyyath and Addeybb, who make showings on online racecards throughout the racing calendar. Who knows, maybe one of them can begin delivering race wins with the sort of regularity that Red Rum did!”
While Red Rum was king over the fences, Frankel is widely recognised as being the best ever horse when it comes to flat racing, with the ratings to easily back that up.
The phenomenon trained by Sir Henry Cecil and ridden by Tom Queally retired having won every single one of the 14 races he started.
He was particularly recognisable to punters due to the white star on his forehead as well as four white socks, which meant everyone could cheer him home down the final straight, be it at Newmarket or Ascot.
Not done with racing once he was retired from the track, Frankel went on to continue his rich bloodline, being the sire to two new stars in Cracksman and Anapurna, the latter having twice won the Champion Stakes.
From the racetrack to the Wild West, Silver was the white horse made famous by The Lone Ranger. The story goes that the ranger came across the wild stallion when it was engaged in a brutal scrap with a buffalo, only for the long nose to come out on top.
The rest was history, with Silver getting the ranger wherever he needed to be to save the day.
Some of the world’s most famous horses never actually laid a hoof on turf but were instead imagined up by an author or movie director.
Such was the case with Black Beauty, who was given life by Anna Sewell’s pen all the way back in 1877. The book went on to sell well over 50 million copies worldwide.
America’s answer to Red Rum, Seabiscuit was the darling of US racing bettors and horse lovers alike, winning the American Triple Crown as well as being named Horse of the year in 1937.
He was immortalised in his very own Hollywood movie that was released in 2003.
Joey – War Horse
First written about by Michael Morpurgo, Joey went on to become an international superstar when Steven Spielberg made him co-protagonist in his Hollywood blockbuster War Horse.
The legend of the trojan horse means it easily makes this list, having featured in works by some of the greatest thinkers the world has ever seen such as Homer and Virgil.
Gulliver – The Horse Whisperer
Any film buff will remember the vivid image of Robert Redford whispering gently to Gulliver, bit by bit winning the heart of the beast as well as that of Kristin Scott Thomas.
Man o’ War
Not only did this horse win 9 of 10 stars in the Hopeful Stakes and Belmont Futurity, but he only just lost the Saratoga Race Course. He was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 1957 and into today’s money he is estimated to be worth $3,184,000.
Best of the Rest
Bringing up the rear are Argo of Xena: Warrior Princess fame, and Tornado who was of course owned by none other than Zorro himself. There are of course many more famous horses of past and present, but for now, these are the ones that made the cut for us.