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Racing week: Farewell Attraction

Last year’s 1,000 Guineas heroine Attraction, one of the most popular horses in training, has run her last race. The four-year-old filly picked up an injury during training and will now return to her owner, the Duke of Roxburghe’s estate of Floors Castle in the Scottish Borders.

Attraction made racing history when she became the first filly to win both the English and Irish Guineas last year. She won 10 of her 15 starts, including five Group 1 races, and just under £900,000 prize money during her short career.

All eyes on the l’Arc

Kieren Fallon has admitted that he might be on the wrong horse for Sunday’s Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, after saying that the Aidan O’Brian-trained St Leger winner Scorpion would prefer the current good ground at Longchamp over his own mount, Hurricane Run.

Hurricane Run has winning form on heavy ground and won the Prix Neil last time on good to soft, so Fallon is praying for rain. But despite a night of light drizzle the official going at Longchamp remains good.

Jockey Club strengthens remounting rules

The Jockey Club has opted against banning jockeys from remounting fallers in jump races, but has agreed to strengthen the existing rules. The decision has angered the RSPCA who believes that the Club has ignored the welfare of horses.

David Muir of the RSPCA said: “Our view is that when a horse falls it should not take any further part in that race and this should be mandatory under the rules of racing to ensure consistency in racehorse welfare”

But Jockey Club officials claim that the welfare of horses remains a priority.

“The regulatory board felt that a ban on remounting would be using a sledgehammer to crack a nut and were confident that the welfare of the horse would remain at the forefront of owners’, trainers’ and jockeys’ minds,” said Malcolm Wallace of the Jockey Club.

Golden Snake to stand in Ireland

Group 1 race-winner Golden Snake will stand at Greentree Stud in Ireland when he returns from Australia. The National Stud-owned stallion enjoyed a glittering racing career, winning six races including four Group 1s in Europe earning £348,486. John Dunlop describes the sire as “a top class Group 1 racehorse, with a brilliant pedigree, who consistently ran with great success at the highest level”.

A good week for Gyles Parkin

Gyles Parkin is no longer under suspicion for race-fixing. Parkin was the sixth jockey arrested as part of the City of London police investigation into alleged race-fixing and spent most of his 32nd Birthday in March in police custody.

The news came as Parkin’s fellow jockeys, Kieren Fallon, Fergal Lynch, Darren Williams, Paul Bradley and Robert Winston, along with trainers Karl Burke and Alan Berry and former owner Miles Rodgers, are preparing to answer their bail in a process due to get under way on Monday and expected to last through most of October.

A bad week for stable lads

The Jockey Club has decided against insisting that stable staff must wear body protectors when riding at work. The Stable Lads’ Association (SLA) is extremely disappointed by the decision, as they were in favour of the protection being made mandatory. The Jockey Club claims that current Health and Safety legislation provides sufficient regulation with each training establishment left to make its own judgement about whether body protectors are required.

And finally…

The Brooke’s horse mascot, Abbla, drove home some very important points when she took part in the 2005 Mascot Grand National at Huntingdon Racecourse last weekend. Abbla, meaning ‘Beautiful One’ in Arabic, represents a horse toiling in a brick kiln in a developing country. With 100 foam bricks piled high on her back, she trailed in last, some 10min behind the winner in the six mini-hurdle race.

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