Permian dies after Secretariat Stakes and jockey William Buick in … – The Guardian

Posted: Sunday, August 13, 2017

William Buick was injured and his mount, Permian, had to be destroyed after a nasty incident at the end of the Secretariat Stakes in Chicago on Saturday night. The colt, trained in Yorkshire by Mark Johnston, had just crossed the line at Arlington International Racecourse in a disappointing last of six when he stumbled, unseating Buick.

It was immediately clear that Permian had broken his left foreleg so badly that he could not be saved. Known in Britain as one of the toughest Flat horses of the year, he was having his eighth race since mid-April and had won three of those, including the King Edward VII Stakes at Royal Ascot.

Buick was reported by the British journalist Nick Luck to have full movement in his limbs. Charlie Johnston, Mark’s son and assistant, later added that the jockey was conscious but in pain as he was taken to hospital.

“We’ve lost the horse,” said Johnston. “He suffered a catastrophic fracture of his left fore. I was with him on the track for 30 seconds. He was in the process of running a very disappointing race and I believe it was when he was winding down that it happened. I am with William and he is conscious, but complaining of back pain.”

Arlington’s Twitter account later reported that Buick had been “sitting up, talking and moving” before he left the track. He was reportedly due to undergo “precautionary” scans.

Buick’s injury came on a winless night for European raiders on the Arlington Million card. However, Fanciful Angel, trained in Newmarket by Marco Botti, plugged on gamely to be second in the big race under Daniel Muscutt, bagging £162,000 in prize money.

The grey was last seen beating one home in a Listed race at Sandown. The US punters made him a 73-1 shot but he belied those odds in finishing a length behind Beach Patrol.

The main Saturday action in Britain was Ascot’s Shergar Cup, where a timely double by Fran Berry helped his ‘Britain and Ireland’ team to victory and reminded everyone of his skills just a couple of months after his split from the trainer Ralph Beckett. It was Berry’s second success in the Silver Saddle for top jockey at this international competition, putting him alongside Richard Hughes and Gerald Mosse as the only riders to have done it more than once.

In his quiet way, Berry pointed out that it was only the third time he had taken part in a Shergar Cup. It is a novelty event rather than a precise measure of riding ability but Berry’s achievement is noteworthy just the same and he is surely right to hope, now that he has decided to remain in Britain as a freelance, that this will have attracted the notice of potential employers.

The job with Beckett was a big one, offering the chance to ride classy animals in Group races, so Berry must feel its loss, especially after only 18 months in the role.

But it lasted long enough for him to make connections in Britain and he has now ridden winners for 20 different trainers this year.

“Fantastic day,” the Irishman said. “I didn’t realise we’d won the competition until after the line. Great to get the call-up, very thankful to get the call-up and even better to ride a couple of winners.

“It’s a big day, you see the crowd here today and you get a kick out of it. You put your head down and work hard through the week but there’s something about riding nice winners on Saturdays. It was such a tight competition going into the last, any one of three teams could have won it and to be in front and hold on was great.”

While he acknowledged an element of luck in being drawn on horses that can win, Berry said coming out on top was “a feather in my cap”. “They might have me back next year,” he added.

It remains to be seen whether Michelle Payne will be asked back next year. The Australian was expected to be the star of this show but dropped out early on Saturdaymorning, saying she was still suffering from a virus, the effects of which she began to feel soon after her arrival on Wednesday.

“I find I am unable to ride in the Dubai Duty Free Shergar Cup competition today,” Payne was quoted as saying in a statement issued by the racecourse, which made her sound as stiffly spoken as the lady who owns Ascot.

The news came as no great surprise, Payne having left early from a media event on Thursday, complaining of illness.

A mischievous few have decided to hold Payne’s withdrawal against her. They may possibly include ITV’s Matt Chapman, who, acting as Ascot’s MC, introduced her replacement, Hollie Doyle, to the crowd with the words “this girl is no diva”.

However, Payne came across well during the hours she spent with the media on Thursday and Ascot officials report that she was genuinely and obviously “gutted” about having to stay in her hotel. She has been told her virus will take five to seven days to shake off, which may yet allow her to ride Kaspersky, who she was aboard in the Queen Anne Stakes at Royal Ascot, at Newbury next Saturday.

Briefly during the first race, Payne must have imagined she had missed a winner as Doyle surged to the front on the 10-1 shot Sir Robert Cheval. But he was collared close home by Jamie Spencer on Stake Acclaim and the day got no better for the Girls Team, who finished tailed off last behind the other three teams.

Hayley Turner, the leading points earner among all jockeys at the Shergar Cup, added just three to her career tally and finished last of the dozen jockeys here.

The ride of the day went to Holland’s Adrie de Vries for his last-to-first effort on Euchen Glen, though in truth it was a good day for hold-up tactics, recent rain having made this track more testing than usual.

“It’s one of those instructions: ‘Drop in last,’ that’s quite easy to translate,” said the Glasgow-based trainer, Jim Goldie. “I said to Adrie: ‘You’re either going to be clever or a villain.’ He appeared very clever. It’s a long way to Scotland [from] down here but some of the jockeys come a lot further.”

Chris Cook’s tips for Sunday


2.10 Lightoller 2.40 Vuela (nb) 3.10 Red Trooper 3.45 Pennsylvania Dutch (nb) 4.20 Algam 4.50 Fastar 5.20 Kings Academy


2.25 Firenze Rosa 2.55 Regimented 3.25 Paradwys (nap) 4.00 Angel Down 4.35 Major Valentine 5.05 City Ground 5.35 Razzmatazz


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