Winner forgotten as horse dies mid race

CHRIS ROOTS
Last updated 09:55 20/01/2013

Relevant offers

Racing

Another Adore-able display from star mare in Ladyship Mile at Menangle Mongolian Khan gives Murray Baker NZ Derby prize at Ellerslie Fight For Glory strides to big win and world record in New South Wales Oaks Jockey Opie Bosson in awe of NZ derby winner Mongolian Khan Tiger Tara romps home to win Cheviot Cup to get back to his best Veteran jockey Terry Moseley notches 900th win at Cromwell Cup Debut quinella for trainer Brett Gray at Winton Awapuni trainer Lisa Latta hopes her luck holds for Auckland Cup Passing Shot victory means Brendon McCullum bags two wins in one day Beautide proves class to win Interdominion as Terror To Love fades down home straight

The crowd lost interest in the winner of the last race at Rosehill when Circle Of Power crashed through the fence early in the straight, dead.

As Riva De Lago crossed the line to give Chris Waller another winning double, trainer Rod Craig and his team ran to their stricken galloper at the 350 metres and worried for jockey Blake Spriggs.

The six-year-old gelding had suffered a heart attack. Spriggs was lucky to escape with just a fat lip, the plastic rail playing a major role in keep him safe.

"I knew there was something wrong coming to the turn, I was trying to pull him up because I thought he had broken down," Spriggs said. "Then he just went towards the fence and I baled out."

Spriggs jumped as Circle Of Power collapsed. "The rail seemed to hold him up for a while," chief steward Ray Murrihy commented.

"He has never gone better than the last month," Craig told stewards. "I didn't see this coming."

Waller, who had watched the race on television, called the incident eerie because he could hear the crowd's reaction before it appeared on the screen. ''You just don't want to see things like that happen, never," he said.

Riva De Lago returned to his winning form courtesy of a great ride from Corey Brown to score his first win since joining the Waller team.

"His first two runs for me were really good, but you had to be disappointed with his last one," Brown said. "That was the very hot day, and we decided to ride him colder and let him hit the line and that's what he did."

The win gave Brown a success on his first day back after suspension and shoulder surgery. He picked his way through the field near the fence and pounced on the lead 100m mark.

"I wanted to give them the easiest run I could because I thought he might be suspect at the 1400m," Brown said. "I didn't want to get to the front too early. I got a great run through and when I got the gap he just exploded."

The five-year-old Riva De Lago won by 2¼ lengths from Zakynthos Imprintz, then Testarhythm.

Ad Feedback

- Sydney Morning Herald

Special offers
Opinion poll

How did you fare with your Melbourne Cup punting?

Nailed it, Protectionist you beauty

Not all bad, a nice little profit

Good and bad, I came out about even

Lost a little, but it could be worse

Crashed and burned, there's always next year though

Vote Result

Related story: (See story)

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content