The horse who sustained a fatal injury in the Al Shira’aa Derby at Hickstead yesterday (25 June) was jumping in what was due to be his last class before he retired.
Navalo De Poheton, ridden by the USA’s Andrew Kocher, suffered a broken leg on the flat after fence four and had to be put down as a result.
In a post on social media the previous day, Andrew had told supporters the 17-year-old gelding was to bow out after the Derby.
“If you’re a Navalo fan be sure to watch the Hickstead Derby tomorrow at 2:45 London time,” he said.
“This will be the eighteen thousand-dollar ($18,000) champion’s last round of his career. If you’re a dreamer you won’t want to miss it.
“The horse that took a normal guy from the middle of nowhere, Pennsylvania, to the World Cup finals and all over the world. Wish him luck!
“We have a special idea for his retirement, but we won’t let that information out yet.”
The Selle Francais gelding and Andrew had enjoyed widespread international success since Andrew took over the ride last year, including representing the US at the World Cup finals in Paris this April. This was both horse and rider’s first visit to Hickstead.
A statement released yesterday by Hickstead read: “The organisers of the All England Jumping Course are sad to report that Navalo De Poheton, the ride of the USA’s Andrew Kocher, was fatally injured while competing in the Hickstead Derby today (24 June).
“The 17-year-old gelding broke a leg on the flat, and despite receiving immediate veterinary attention in the ring he was not able to be saved.
“The Bunn family and the title sponsors Al Shira’aa expressed their condolences to the horse’s connections, and praised the swift and professional reactions of the arena officials and veterinary team.”
Full report from the Al Shira’aa Hickstead Derby Meeting in Horse & Hound magazine, on sale Thursday 28 June.
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