Two horses have died following the running of the 2014 Melbourne Cup.
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Favourite Admire Rakti and Araldo have both died after the Melbourne Cup, marring the end to the great race.
A distressed Admire Rakti collapsed and died in its stall following the race while Araldo was euthanised after kicking a fence post-race.
As the German-owned Protectionist crossed the line to win the big-money event, a clearly distressed Admire Rakti crossed the line in last.
Sent out as a strong favourite, Admire Rakti fought with My Ambivalent for the lead for most of the race, but faded in the final 400 metres.
Reports emerged soon after the race that the Japanese horse had collapsed in its stall, with Racing Victoria chief steward Terry Bailey confirming that it had died.
In a statement, Racing Victoria’s head of veterinary and equine welfare Dr Brian Stewart expressed his sympathies to Admire Rakti’s owners and trainer.
“It is with sadness that we confirm that Admire Rakti has passed away in his stall following the running of the Melbourne Cup,” Stewart said.
“The exact cause of death is yet to be determined, although the circumstances of the horse’s passing are very rare.
“A post-mortem will be conducted at the University of Melbourne Veterinary Hospital as is standard practice.
“Our sympathies are extended at this time to the owner Mr Kondo, trainer Mr Umeda and his staff who cared deeply for their horse and are naturally saddened by their tragic loss.”
Meanwhile, seventh-placed Araldo was put down hours after the race after it was spooked and put its foot through a fence in the mounting yard.
While trying to jerk its leg free from the fence, it is believed it fractured a pastern in the process.
Dr. Brian Stewart confirmed Araldo’s death and extended his sympathies to the horse’s connections.
“It is with sadness that we confirm that Araldo has had to be humanely euthanised as a result of the injury it suffered in a freak accident following the Emirates Melbourne Cup,” Dr Stewart said.
“The horse received immediate veterinary care and was transported to the University of Melbourne Veterinary Hospital, however, sadly the fracture in its pastern was not repairable.
“The owners made the decision to humanely euthanise Araldo in the best interests of the horse.
“Our sympathies are extended at this time to trainer Mike Moroney, his staff and the owners who are extremely saddened by the loss of their horse in such tragic circumstances.”