Champion horse autopsy confirms heart attack


Melbourne Cup favourite Admire Rakti. Photo: Creative Commons
Late Melbourne Cup favourite Admire Rakti. Photo: Creative Commons


A preliminary autopsy on champion race horse Admire Rakti has confirmed the six-year-old suffered a heart attack after yesterday’s Melbourne Cup.

The Caulfield Cup winner collapsed in the stables five minutes after finishing last in yesterday’s 154th instalment of the premier event.

Acute heart failure was found to be the initial  cause of death, with further autopsies to be conducted in the coming week.

The autopsy undertaken at University of Melbourne revealed that the horse dropped back in the latter stages of the race as a result of ventricular fibrillation.

Racing Victoria’s chief veterinarian Brian Stewart said “it happens very, very rarely in human athletes and in horses and is a consequence of the athletic heart and the rapid heart rate during racing.”

“It is very rare but it does occur,” Dr Stewart said.

Racing Victoria confirmed last night, after their veterinarian’s best efforts, Araldo had also been euthanised after suffering a leg injury at the end of the race.

The seven-year-old stallion suffered a break to the pastern bone in its hind leg after being spooked by a flag waved by a member of the crowd.

The unfortunate accident occurred while the German horse was being lead back to the mounting yard.

In a statement released today, the Chairman and Directors of the Victoria Racing Club have extended their sympathies to the connections of Admire Rakti and Araldo, stating they were “saddened by both these incidents and is working with Racing Victoria to review them.”


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