Death mars opening day of Australian racing event

The Warrnambool Racing Carnival had gone five years without a death. Photo / Getty
The Warrnambool Racing Carnival had gone five years without a death. Photo / Getty

Bryce Stanaway's stayer Cliff's Dream was put down after a jumps fall on Tuesday, ending the Warrnambool Carnival's five years without a death.

The seven-year-old grey gelding fell on the inside of a tightly bunched field at the second-last hurdle of the 3200m George Taylor Memorial Hurdle and fractured his nearside knee.

A green screen was pulled around the horse on the final bend before he was euthanized.

Jockey Richard Eynon fell over the falling gallopers neck and took some time to sit up but after being attended by ambulance officers was able to walk back to jockey's room.

Stanaway comforted the visibly upset Eynon and said the fall was "no one's fault, that's racing".

The Torquay trainer had moments earlier watched a replay of the race in the stewards room and sadly shook his head when he saw Cliff's Dream come down.

He said it did not look like a serious fall.

"It's no one's fault, it was just one of those accidents," he said.

It is the first death at Warrnambool's three-day race carnival since 2011.

Cliff's Dream was having his first start over the jumps, following two hurdle trials. He had raced 39 times for three wins.

The death will again put the sport under the spotlight after the industry almost banned jumps racing for good in 2009.

It was the third of three hurdle races at Warrnambool, and the first two had been incident free on a heavy track.

It also soured the win of jockey Jamie Mott on Livery, his first win in nine rides over the jumps.


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