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Racing at Ayr abandoned after seven-horse pile up

A seven-horse pile up at Ayr yesterday (Monday, 13 July) forced the racecourse to cancel the remaining races on the card.

The last five races were abandoned due to unsafe ground after seven of the 12 runners fell in the 3pm at Ayr.

The course is now under fire as it is not the first time an incident of this type has occurred.

The horses fell on the straight coming out of the home turn.

Balwearie ridden by Frederik Tylicki was the first to slip bringing down five others — Northside Prince, Hawkit, All in the Red, Whopman Gate and Talk of Saafend.

Meanwhile Neon Blue, ridden by Amy Ryan at the back of the field, came down on his own. Darfour also slipped but kept his feet.

Jockey Joe Fanning broke his left collarbone after falling from All In The Red while Paul Mulrennan was kicked on the right hip.

Balwearie suffered a broken jaw and was taken to Glasgow University for veterinary treatment.

All the other horses and riders were unhurt.

The pile-up yesterday was the result of heavy rainfall before the start of racing on fast ground.

PJ McDonald who was riding Northside Prince, described the situation as “a disgrace” and likened the track to an “ice rink”.

Prior to the pile up racehorse Jigajig slipped over near the winning post, throwing his jockey.

Clerk of the course Katherine Self, whose last meeting at Ayr is next Monday (20 July) told press she felt Ayr did “everything possible to ensure safe ground” and that everyone was “very concerned for the jockeys and horses and very sorry for Joe Fanning”.

A spokesman for Ayr Racecourse confirmed this morning (14 July) they had been visited by British Horseracing Authority course inspector Chris Dennis, but their next meeting on Monday (20 July) is due to go ahead.

“We will be realigning the bend as well as watering as necessary and checking the draining to ensure safe racing. We had 2.5mm of rain 2-3 hours before racing on good to firm ground which was our problem yesterday,” he said.

In August 2005 jockey Robert Winston suffered serious jaw injury at a fall on same bend. He fell from Pearl’s A Singer and was kicked by another horse, sidelining him for rest of the year. That incident also involved three other fallers and forced abandonment.

And in May last year racing was abandoned after the discovery of a patch of false ground.

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