This is a verbal audio statement, from Stephen Higgins, Joint Managing Director, Newbury Racecourse with regard to todays events at Newbury Racecourse…
A full Stewards Enquiry was held at Newbury Racecourse today following the incident prior to Race 1 when two horses collapsed and died in the parade ring. The horses were Fenix Two trained by Jonjo O’Neill and Marching Song trained by Andy Turnell.
On conclusion of the Enquiry Joint Managing Director, Newbury Racecourse Stephen Higgins commented “Having suffered two unexplained equine fatalities in the parade ring, for equine and human safety reasons, we took the decision to abandon racing today until the cause could be established. We have now launched a full investigation into today’s events. There is speculation that electricity may have been involved, which the Southern Electricity Board, will be investigating. Newbury Racecourse extends its condolences to the connections of Fenix Two and Marching Song”.
Professor Tim Morris, Director of Equine Science and Welfare for the British Horseracing Authority, said:
Commenting on the incident that led to the abandonment of racing at Newbury after two horses collapsed and died in the parade ring before racing, Professor Tim Morris, Director of Equine Science and Welfare for the British Horseracing Authority, has confirmed a full investigation is under way. He said:
“Following the tragic events at Newbury today, our sympathies go out to connections of the two horses that died, Fenix Two and Marching Song. We have launched a full investigation into the events before the first race. Whilst there are suspicions that an electrical fault was the cause and this is being looked into by the racecourse and relevant authorities, it is important that we investigate other possible causes.
“Both horses have been sent for post mortem examinations and samples from both horses, and from the other two horses involved in the incident, have been taken and will be analysed. We will also be testing a sample of the water supply and have secured and will review all of the CCTV footage from the racecourse stables and footage from the parade ring itself at the time. We have gathered evidence and statements at the racecourse from the connections involved with the incident, including trainers, jockeys, stable staff and owners, the racecourse and BHA veterinary officers, and the racecourse executive including the health and safety officer.”