Fan-favourite Harchibald has died age 25

The hugely popular Harchibald has sadly passed away aged 25.

Harchibald. Picture: Healey Racing

The Noel Meade-trained Harchibald won 14 races including two Grade 1 Fighting Fifth's and a Grade 1 at Tipperary, but the loveable hurdler will always be best remembered for playing his vital part in the thrilling 2005 Champion Hurdle.

Jockey Paul Carberry sat motionless up the run-in, but Harchibald was outbattled in the closing stages by Hardy Eustace.

Noel Meade said of his five-time Grade 1 winner on X: "Hail the King, our King is dead….Harchi was my favourite horse of all time,"

"I know on occasions he annoyed people and for sure he annoyed me, but we had great days together, @paulcarberry Harchi & myself…never to be forgotten & I'd like to thank Johnny & Danielle Hurley for looking after him so well in his retirement. He became part of the family with them. R.I.P. old friend… #harchibald."

Harchibald added a pair of Grade 1 Christmas Hurdles at Kempton to his two Fighting Fifth's and amassed over £500,000 in prize money.

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