Drama as horse escapes from Sandown during race

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  • Drivers close to Sandown Park racecourse were faced with an unusual sight on Friday (8 December), when a riderless horse escaped on to the road during a race.

    Mustmeetalady was being ridden by James King in an amateur riders’ race. The Jonjo O’Neill-trained gelding unseated his jockey at the first fence and continued for a circuit minus a rider, before bursting through two sets of plastic running rails and the racecourse boundary, eventually finding his way on to the road.

    The seven-year-old was caught a mile and a half away on the cricket pitch at West End.

    The racecourse, near Esher in Surrey, will now investigate whether more could be done to prevent a repeat of the incident, with clerk of the course Andrew Cooper adding he had never seen one like it before.

    “We saw him go and our estates manager Craig Williamson was first on the scene closely followed by one of our vets,” Andrew told the Racing Post. “We sent one of our horse ambulances to pick him up. The horse has a little nick but that may have happened in the tumble anyway.

    I’ve never known a horse get out there. There is a racecourse rail on the outside of the bend which he has gone through. He then found the service road down the side of the course.

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    “At this point there is a big set of vehicle gates, which were closed, but either side of that there is a small section of white railing, which he got through. I think we will look to make the outer barrier more secure.”

    The Diane Carr-owned son of Mustameet has had 17 runs under Rules, with three wins under his belt. Friday’s opening race was won by 13-year-old seasoned chaser Pete The Feat, who is trained by Charlie Longsdon.

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