Race abandoned after 200-1 shot wins following gate malfunction that leaves horses and jockeys trapped in stalls
A 200-1 shot in Australia had his first ever win taken away from him – after the stalls failed to open properly.
Five-year-old gelding Abraxos stormed clear in the closing stages to cause a huge upset at Ararat races on Tuesday.
His performance belied his recent form as he swept by the top two in the betting Creme De La Bomme and Firestone near the finish.
Abraxos was having his 12th career start, having been beaten by a minimum of nine lengths on each of his previous six runs.
But the joy of his connections was short-lived as a stewards' inquiry was announced shortly after the runners had crossed the line.
TV replays showed that half the field was denied a fair start due to a stalls malfunction.
The beaten favourite Creme De La Boome (stall 8) was one of those whose gate was slow to open.
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It was a cruel blow to Alan Hanrahan, who owns and trainers Abraxos, but the stewards had no choice but to declare the race void.
Racing fans were gutted for Hanrahan.
One said on Twitter: "Very unfortunate. Feel for all connections."
Another posted: "Feel for Alan Hanrahan today. Has to absorb all costs of preparing and presenting horse to race, keeps getting balloted from maidens, finally gets a run only to have the result taken off him."
While another commented: "Feel for all involved. Gutted here too … little each way. Huge smile at the flashing finish. Check the TAB account an hour or so later and see refund only there."
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