Melbourne Cup import’s owner slams Racing Victoria decision

Melbourne Cup import’s owner slams Racing Victoria decision

A prominent Melbourne owner was left furious after Racing Victoria banned his Melbourne Cup hope from entering the Werribee quarantine facility.

Racing Victoria has ruled incoming Melbourne Cup entry Night Endeavor must head to the Australian Government’s Mickleham facility to complete two weeks’ quarantine.

RV vets deemed Night Endeavor unfit to enter Werribee after showing signs of soreness in a trot-up at the UK quarantine facility late last week.

The horse is one of five on a flight to Melbourne that is due to arrive overnight on Tuesday.

The remaining four have all been cleared to enter Racing Victoria’s facility at Werribee.

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Bennett Racing boss Nathan Bennett said Racing Victoria hasn’t advised him of their decision in writing, labelling the governing body’s actions “a disgrace”.

“I haven’t even had it in writing. It should be in an email saying, ‘here’s the vet report and here’s what we failed him on’,” Bennett said.

“We got notified yesterday (Monday) after IRT, the transport company, already knew.

“They got told yesterday at 1.06pm but I was told at 1.58 (pm), which was a disgrace.

“It was too late to be saying the horse can’t travel.”

Bennett said connections have spent approximately $60,000 to get Night Endeavor to Australia.

He declared the horse would head straight to New South Wales to compete rather than race in Victoria.

“If he turns up and he is actually sore, we’ll need to check him out and see what’s going on,” Bennett said.

“If he gets here and he’s trotting up fine and he ticks every other box, then head straight to New South Wales and race under Ciaron Maher and David Eustace up there.”

A Racing Victoria spokesperson said vets had examined Night Endeavor on multiple occasions over five weeks.

The spokesperson noted RV-appointed vets advised that Night Endeavor’s condition had deteriorated, which prompted the decision to exclude the stayer from Werribee.

“The horse underwent four veterinary examinations over a period of five weeks in the UK displaying single limb lameness at an inspection prior to entering quarantine and then multiple limb lameness at its final inspection in pre-export quarantine,” the spokesperson said.

“The four examinations were conducted in person by the same RV-appointed veterinarian and were also filmed for review by the RV veterinary panel who collectively made the decision to exclude Night Endeavor noting that the horse’s suitability to race had deteriorated from its initial examination to its final one.”

Originally published as Owner slams Racing Victoria for banning Melbourne Cup import Night Endeavor from Werribee

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