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Donkey that thinks it's a horse named supreme driving champion
THE STORY of Babe, the pig who thought he was a sheep dog, has for generations captured the hearts of children and parents.
And now a Bedale couple have raised a winner in the competitive world of supreme driving championships – with a donkey who thinks he is a horse.
Fergus the donkey – show name Prospect House Prospero – has been competing in driving competitions for years but has finally succeeded in pipping the horses to the post to become the British Supreme Driving Champion.
Owner Bill Tetlow and wife Carol, from Bedale, said Fergus had to compete in the exercise and driven dressage classes, as well as completing a four-mile cross country show drive.
This adds to Fergus’ list of triumphs at the Championship Show. In 1998 he was British Foal Champion, in 2002 he was the British Stallion Champion and the British Supreme In Hand Champion and in 2006 the British Gelding Champion.
Mr Tetlow said: “He is a very clever donkey – and he knows it. It doesn’t seem to faze him to compete against horses and he has always done well.
“He has been reserve champion five years in a row and then finally has won the championship. But after five years we started to think it would never happen, but this time he pulled out all the stops.”
Fergus is the second donkey in the history of the Donkey Breed Society to achieve a double win of both the in-hand and driving supreme championships.
And at the recent Wensleydale Show, Fergus was the only donkey competing in the driving class and came home with the best in class trophy.
Mr Tetlow, who is a trustee of the Donkey Sanctuary, said: “Donkeys are very intelligent animals and have much more personality than horses – I do like horses but for the last 30 years we have kept and bred donkeys and we love them.
"We are now training up another donkey, Grace, to do the driving in next year’s competitions and we hope to see her do just as well as Fergus.
“We want to see both of them competing in driving classes at Wensleydale Show next year.”
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