“Neptune rises from a sea of carnage”
“Triumph over tragedy”
“National woe over death of Synchronised”
“Death and glory”
“Will this kill the National?”
“Neptune soars but National sinks”
“Another National tragedy”
I could go on unfortunately ….. most of the above will appear on the front pages of this morning’s papers. I’ve not divulged any of the words (it’s probably not a good idea to read the Mail/Express) but it’s blatantly obvious yet again yesterday was a bad day for the sport we all love – or most of you that read the blog do. Having missed the actual race, I watched in on replay last night and sitting there I watched the first 6-8 or fences till they got to the Canal Turn and I was amazed at the number of horses that had fallen. 15 had perished by the time they’d reached the 11th fence. A quick check of those that had fallen is truly eye-opening.
Viking Blond – 5 previous chases, never fallen
Junior – 8 previous chases, never fallen
Killyglen – 14 previous chases, fallen once, in the 2011 race
Synchronised – 9 previous chases, never fallen
Becauseicouldntsee – 11 previous races, fell 3 times, once in 2011 race
West End Rocker – 14 previous chases, fell 1 once, brought down in 2011 race
State of Play – 17 previous chases, never fallen
Alfa Beat – 15 previous chases, fallen once, in the 2011 Topham over same fences
Tatenen – 20 previous chases, fell three times
Black Apalachi – 26 previous chases, fell twice – 08 National and 09 National
Chicago Grey – 15 previous chases, fell twice
Arbor Supreme – 21 previous chases, fell four times – including 10 and 11 National
Organisedconfusion – 12 previous chases, fell twice
Treacle – 15 previous chases, fell once
Rare Bob – 24 previous chases, fell once
So in total 216 chase runs with 21 falls prior to yesterday’s race. Of those falls 8 were over the National fences. Staggering really therefore that so many horses do fall at Aintree. Remember these are not incapable horses, they are some of the best horses in the UK and Ireland, they can jump a fence. What should be done about it? My initial thought would be to limit the runners to 30 maximum, there just doesn’t look enough room for everyone, you jump the fence perfectly well and get brought down because the horse in front falls. I’d probably even go less and say down to 25. Would it be less of a spectacle? No. Because 15 have usually fallen by the Chair at any rate. The fences themselves may also need looking at, but the numbers need shortening in my opinion. Big time.
On a more positive note.
40/1 on Neptune Collonges thank you very much! A very well deserved retirement to a true equine superstar!
RIP Synchronised and According to Pete
Will post up some ratings for Leopardstown if I get a chance later.