Melbourne Cup horse Anthony Van Dyck euthanised after race

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One of the horses which competed in today’s Melbourne Cup, named Anthony Van Dyck, has been euthanised after sustaining a fracture, Racing Victoria says.

A handout photo taken and released on November 2, 2020 by Racing Photos shows Irish horse Anthony Van Dyck galloping at Werribee Racecourse on November 2, 2020, ahead of the Melbourne Cup horse race to be run November 3.

Anthony Van Dyck galloping at Werribee Racecourse yesterday, ahead of the Melbourne Cup race. Photo: Racing Photos / Pat Scala / AFP

The horse had to be euthanised after sustaining a fractured fetlock, Racing Victoria’s executive general manager – integrity services Jamie Stier said in a statement.

“The horse received immediate veterinary care, however he was unable to be saved due to the nature of the injury sustained.

“Our sympathies are extended to the owners of Anthony Van Dyck, trainer Aidan O’Brien and all his staff who cared for the horse and are greatly saddened by their loss,” Stier said.

Today’s race was won by Twilight Payment, being ridden by Jye McNeil.

Racing Victoria’s Integrity Services team will prepare a fatality report for Anthony Van Dyck, which will include a post mortem to be conducted by the University of Melbourne Veterinary Clinic, Stier said.

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Hugh Bowman who was riding Anthony Van Dyck was uninjured.

Racing Victoria said Victoria’s race day fatality rate is among the lowest in world racing with a safety record of 99.95 percent and a fatal incident rate of 0.05 percent. It said it is striving to reduce race day fatalities towards zero.

Anthony Van Dyck is the second racing fatality at Flemington Racecourse in 2020, Racing Victoria said.

The five-year-old stallion won the Epsom Derby last year and finished second in the Caufield Cup a fortnight ago.

The horse was carrying 58.5 kilograms and was being ridden by jockey Hugh Bowman, who was uninjured.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) spokeswoman Emily Rice said the horse was a victim of “the disgrace that stops the nation”.

“The reality of the abusive racing industry is that horses are made to run to the detriment of their health,” she said.

“Before they’ve even finished maturing, these 500-kilogram animals – supported on ankles as small as those of humans – are pushed past their limits, forced to race at breakneck speeds to the finishing line while being whipped.”

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Rice called for Anthony Van Dyck’s veterinary records to be released following the investigation.

RNZ / ABC

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