Grand National pre-race favourite Synchronised went down during the world’s toughest steeplechase, one of two horses to die in the internationally well-known competition.
Synchronised had shown signs of unrest prior to the start of the race, unseating jockey Tony McCoy. Race organizers reported that the horse was “thoroughly checked” by a veterinarian, and allowed to line up with the other horses in the field.
However, Synchronised went down at the sixth fence of the four-mile, 30-fence race. According to Pete, another race horse, went down at the same fence later. The race is considered one of the most prestigious jumping races of the Grand National.
Neptune Collonges finished in first place, in the closest finish of the history of the race.
“In both cases the horse incurred a fracture to the leg and the humane option was to put the injured horses down,” said Tim Morris, spokesman of the British Horseracing Authority. “The Grand National undoubtedly represents a challenge to both horse and rider.
“It has inherent risks, but, working closely with Aintree and other stakeholders, we do all we can to minimise these risks while maintaining the unique character of the race.”
As of this writing, there is no word on injuries to jockeys McCoy or Harry Haynes, who was aboard According to Pete.
Morris said the BHA's objective is to reduce the number of injuries and fatalities in racing, saying that “We will examine closely the circumstances which led to both incidents … and consider what measures can be taken to address the risk of a repeat in the future.”
Two horses die in Grand National steeplechase: AINTREE, England (AP):Grand National pre-race favourite Synchronised… http://t.co/hPZuU2lH
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