St Moritz : White Turf
This was my third excursion to St Moritz this time with Brian Meehan trained Mutarakez newly bought from Doncaster Horses In Training Sales for a new owner. The horse travelled very well arriving on Thursday. On Saturday morning the track was opened for the horses to exercise, he had a steady canter around the circuit. The track seemed in good condition from what we could see, slightly on the quick side but no issues. The horse took well to the surface in the newly fitted grooved shoes. It was on raceday that the trip took a u-turn for the worse, attending the first to see the conditions, which was the 6 1/2 furlong Moyglare Stud Stakes where we finished 3rd before with Desert Strike. Turning into the home straight one of the field I believe it was Boomerang Bob, Jamie Osbournes and George Baker took a nasty fall appearing to have been caused by hole in the snow, followed by another horse at the same spot. Both jockeys were airlifted to hospital and upon inspection of the track, it was decided by race officials to abandon the meeting due to the uncertainty as to wether it would be safe. This was really a relief for us all as it clearly was not safe for the jockeys and the horses and their well being comes first. Reports from the jockeys that not only was the lake cracking on the straight it was also on the first turn and the back stretch. This is not the first time this has happened and I think that it needs to be seriously reviewed, the affects of global warming clearly has the lake thawing earlier than in the past and I think that when the event is held (i.e. timing) could be the key to keeping this unique raceday alive. Although it was a fantastic trip for all outside of this we have advised the owners to seek compensation it is not a cheap trip.