Rhinestone Cowboy Native Upmanship

Native Upmanship 1993-2024

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Native Upmanship (Be My Native-Hi’ Upman, by Deep Run), who passed away at Coolmore Stud earlier today at the age of 31. Native Upmanship, bred by John Noonan of Cregg Stud in Fermoy, Co. Cork cemented himself in National Hunt racing folklore as the winner of 7 Grade 1 races.

After securing the first of his back-to-back Grade 1 Melling Chase victories at Aintree in 2002, jockey Conor O’Dwyer told the racing press: “This horse has the heart of a lion. Native Upmanship never, never misses a battle and he is as tough as old boots.” This statement could not have been more prescient.

Trained by Arthur Moore, Native Upmanship enjoyed a stellar racing career which saw him return to the winner’s enclosure on 16 occasions, 13 of those being at Graded level. Highlights included winning the Powers Gold Cup at Fairyhouse by an eased down 30 lengths in April 2000. He also won two renewals of the John Durkan Memorial Chase at Punchestown in 2000 and 2002, and back-to-back victories of the Melling Chase at Aintree in 2002 and 2003.

For his trainer Arthur Moore, Native Upmanship was the horse of a lifetime. “Native Upmanship was an unbelievably tough horse that loved his racing. He gave me some of my most memorable days on a racecourse and we were extremely fortunate to have had him. I want to pay tribute to the staff at Coolmore who cared for him exceptionally throughout his retirement.”

Trish Kearney who looked after Native Upmanship at Coolmore reflected on their time together saying: “Native Upmanship will be greatly missed by all of us who looked after him here. He lived out his days receiving the greatest of care from all of the team. We have very fond memories of him, especially considering we cared for him throughout his long retirement and also during his summer holidays in his racing career. It’s a sad day but Native Upmanship will always have a special place in our hearts.”

The 2½ mile specialist retired from racing in 2006 and enjoyed a long and happy retirement at Coolmore Stud, much of it alongside the late Rhinestone Cowboy (left).