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Horse died at Waregem Koerse after heavy fall (Waregem)

A horse died on Tuesday at the 175th edition of Waregem Koerse. The animal fell heavily and broke its right thigh. It was later euthanized. Animal rights organization Gaia is not pleased with the incident.

The five-year-old French horse Hyperion de Kerser fell during the Price Baron Casier competition, the second obstacle race at Waregem Koerse. When taking an obstacle, first the jockey fell from his horse and then the horse also fell. A vet always follows the race during Waregem Koerse and was able to intervene immediately. “We immediately saw that it didn’t look good,” says Frank Gasthuys, the vet linked to Waregem Koerse and the Ghent Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. “Bad bad luck. This remains a great pity, but we didn’t want to let Hyperion suffer any longer and decided to put it to sleep. There were about a hundred horses at the start today. With the exception of Hyperion, they all made it to the finish safely. This unfortunate incident was really bad luck.”

The organization gets the wind from the front of animal rights organization Gaia. “Another dead horse, which did not survive Waregem Koerse”, says Michel Vandenbosch of Gaia. “I’m sick of it. 175 years of Waregem Koerse has clearly not become a day to celebrate for the euthanized horse Hyperion, which suffered a serious fracture. GAIA therefore declares 175 years of Waregem Koerse a pitch-black day for the horses.”

“Unfortunately, it is with a heavy heart that I have to conclude today that Waregem Koerse is not nearly safe enough for the racehorses. This cannot go on like this. After all our efforts, it is clearly not enough.”

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The board behind Waregem Koerse emphasizes that they are doing everything they can. “This is a really unfortunate accident”, says Bram Vandewalle, CEO of Waregem Koerse. “All horses are inspected the day before or on the day of Waregem Koerse. Only horses that are powerful enough to start will start here,” Gasthuys adds. “We know from experience that these types of fractures are irreversible. With a human you can fix most fractures, with a horse that is not possible. Unfortunately.”

(sgg,kvo)

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