Another Famous Steeple Chase; Another Round of Inexcusable Injuries in This “Sport”

Posted on May 5, 2011

During the running of the Grand Annual Steeplechase at Warrnambool, Australia, a horse that had lost its jockey jumped, riderless, an 8 foot fence into a crowd of about 50 people.  Here are the still photos of this followed by the video and the Sidney Morning Herald’s account of the mishap.  Only 2 horses finished the course.

Here is the video:

Here is the account from the Australian newspaper, The Sydney Morning Herald.

AL GARHOOD won his second consecutive Grand Annual Steeplechase at Warrnambool yesterday but the race will be forever remembered for the wrong reasons after a riderless horse crashed into the crowd and, for the first time in the race’s 134-year history, just two horses completed the 5500-metre course.

In a bizarre series of events, six of the eight riders were dislodged from their horses but, while none of the riders or horses were seriously injured, seven of the more than 50 spectators that had gathered on Tozer Road outside the course had to be taken to Warrnambool Hospital after Banna Strand leapt a 2m barrier and crashed through the crowd.

Among the injured were a two-year-old girl, who suffered a fractured collarbone. An 80-year-old woman needed X-rays on her shoulder and hip, while a 12-year-old girl required X-rays on her foot.

See also my earlier post on the death of 2 horses at Britain’s Grand National 2011.