Spring Confidential: Vets fire up over mortality rate; Hugh Bowman’s annus horribilis

Standby for some powerful commentary from respected veterinarians over the Werribee track in the aftermath of Anthony Van Dyck’s Melbourne Cup death.

Spring Confidential has been told analysis of the mortality rate at Sandown, the original quarantine site for internationals in 1993, and Werribee, the current site since 2010, will make for confronting reading.

One vet said the statistics will prove explosive, pointing to recent Cup deaths of Verema, Cliffsofmoher and Red Cadeaux.

Hugh Bowman on Anthony Van Dyck during trackwork at Werribee.Source:Getty Images

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Internationals visitors rave about the facilities at Werribee and the way the centre is run.

They also argue the relatively tight nature of the course is not an issue, pointing to the massive variety of undulating, turning courses the European horses are grounded on.

Bowman’s year from hell

Anthony Van Dyck‘s sad passing marked another wretched chapter in Hugh Bowman’s 2020.

There was the controversial Sydney ride and original 20-meeting ban with the contentious Farnan ride, interference in the Caulfield Guineas which led to him losing the Cox Plate winning ride on Sir Dragonet and then poor Anthony Van Dyck’s death.

Little wonder Bowman is feeling a shell-shocked and a touch wary of the media.

Jye McNeil has made plenty of friends after his Cup ride.Source:Getty Images

A star is born

From the bleak to the bright.

As columnists we have covered hundreds of sporting events and sporting careers dating back decades.

Jye McNeil’s achievement to win the Melbourne Cup is right up there and not only due to his riding skill to nail such a momentous feat at such a young age.

But McNeil (and his whole family for that matter) all pass the “good person” test. Which is important.

It’s easy to be all smiles in front of the camera but we’ve seen plenty of sportspeople who put on one face for the camera and then morph into a totally different character behind the scenes.

Jye McNeil is exactly what you saw on your TV sets on Tuesday – a humble, respectful, lovely and thoughtful young man.

Many more big things are in store.

What’s in a race name

Race name changes are a dime a dozen and it has continued during Melbourne Cup week.

The Listed 1400m contest on the final day of the Flemington carnival has been variously known as the Springtime Stakes, Hilton Stakes, Sutcliffe Stakes, UCI Stakes, Interlink Stakes and Glyde Stakes.

As of Saturday, it will be known as The Amanda Elliott.

What are the odds of it remaining in the retiring Victoria Racing Club chairman‘s name?

Banquo won last year’s Springtime Stakes which is now to be known as The Amanda Elliott.Source:News Corp Australia

The Whisper

Our mailman normally delivers and he reckons that 24-time Group I winning jockey Brad Rawiller’s trip west for the upcoming Perth carnival could be the the start of a permanent stint.

We understand trainer Lindsey Smith will be a key supporter.

Rawiller has multiple Group 1 wins on Weekend Hussler and Black Heart Bart to his name and also counts the Golden Slipper (Phelan Ready) and Caulfield Cup (Viewed) among his riding highlights.

Originally published asVets ready to spill on confronting mortality rate

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