A former stablelad, now a successful artist, has created a scene from racing’s past for this year’s Injured Jockeys’ Fund Christmas card.
Newmarket-based David ‘Mouse’ Morris has donated a painting of horses arriving at a snowy Ascot Station for the card which is one of the Fund’s biggest annual earners.
“It’s a privilege to be asked to do the card because I am a beneficiary of the fund myself,” said Mouse, who worked for trainer David Elsworth until leaving to concentrate on a new career as an artist.
“I looked back at previous cards, many of which showed horses galloping through the snow - which hasn’t happened for a long, long time because the snow gets compacted into ice in their hooves and thrown into the air which is dangerous for the riders and other horses.
“So although my card is an imagined scene from years ago, it is also more true to life. I wanted to create something factual but to evoke an atmosphere of another age - a kind of nostalgia. I’m told sales and feedback have both been good so it seems that people like it,” he added.
As well as the 2017 card, Mouse has contributed his work to previous IJF calendars and has also donated a percentage of proceeds from the sale of his paintings.
“The IJF has given me a lot of help and support, including somewhere to live, and there are people who would be really struggling if it wasn’t for their help so it’s good to give something back,” he said.
The cards at £7.50 for a pack of 10 or £12.50 if they are personalised and overprinted, can be ordered online at shop.ijf.org.uk or purchased at the Horseracing Heritage Centre shop or the IJF office at Kings Court, Willie Snaith Road, Newmarket.