A Strathalbyn race horse caught up in the Cudlee Creek bushfires bounces back

SURVIVOR: Trainer Shayne Cahill at his Ashbourne Property with the resilient Turf Tapper. Shayne and wife Chelsea nursed the horse back to winning health.

SURVIVOR: Trainer Shayne Cahill at his Ashbourne Property with the resilient Turf Tapper. Shayne and wife Chelsea nursed the horse back to winning health.

Everyone loves a comeback and there is no other great comeback story than the one about Turf Tapper.

The Strathalbyn horse was caught up in the Cudlee Creek bushfires last summer and has made a remarkable, unlikely and successful return to the race track.

At the height of the blaze, Turf Tapper managed to break through a paddock fence and literally run for his life, but was left traumatised by the experience and affected by the smoke.

At the time of the fire, the six-year-old gelding was being kept at the Woodside property of owner and former trainer John Glatz.

Following the fire, Turf Tapper was transferred to the Ashbourne property of Shayne and Chelsea Cahill and was subsequently nursed back to health.

At his first start back from the ordeal, Turf Tapper scored a hard-fought win at Bordertown on June 28.

"He's done a big job to come through it," trainer Shayne Cahill said.

"There's a bit of a wives' tale that horses don't come through the fires very well from the smoke inhalation and everything.

"But we cleaned his airways up a bit with some powders and whatever and he's stuck on pretty good."

After the win Shayne and Chelsea took to social media to express their excitement.

"We could not be happier to have this guy get over the line first for John Glatz, after being through so much with the fires in December," they said.

Mr Glatz was caught up in the fire trying to save his home and animals and sustained serious burns as a result.

Caitlin Tootell rides Turf Tapper (Big Brian) at track work and is also the horse's strapper.

Caitlin Tootell rides Turf Tapper (Big Brian) at track work and is also the horse's strapper.

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