Racehorse recovering well thanks to first-class veterinary care

Red Cadeaux is recovering well following surgery to treat a fracture sustained during the Melbourne Cup at Flemington racecourse last week.

The nine-year old racehorse, who is the highest-earning British-trained racehorse of all time, fractured a bone in his front left fetlock during the race. Jockey Gerald Mosse immediately pulled Red Cadeaux up, allowing racecourse vets to swiftly tend to Red Cadeaux.

Gerald Mosse and the on-course vets have been praised by Ed Dunlop's travelling head lad Robin Trevor-Jones:

"Gerald Mosse saved Red Cadeaux's life. He probably felt him go ten to 15 yards before that and he's hauled him up and hopped off him. The vets were there within seconds and they've lifted that leg off the floor…How they've done everything is brilliant."

After being stabilised, the popular racehorse was transferred to the University of Melbourne Veterinary Hospital Equine Centre when he underwent surgery following consultation with world-leading veterinary surgeons to ensure that the very best course of action was taken.

Speaking about the surgery, Red Cadeaux’s trainer Ed Dunlop said:

"The vets have advised me the surgery went well and Red Cadeaux is comfortable standing back in his box and has eaten, which is fantastic news.

“Once again, on behalf of all of us involved with the horse, I must offer heartfelt thanks to the veterinary team, both on course and at the University of Melbourne Veterinary Hospital Equine Centre, for their magnificent efforts. Each and every individual involved was superb and they are the reason he is still with us.”

While this marks the end of Red Cadeaux racing career, during which he competed in eight countries across three continents, his achievements will certainly not be forgotten by those who worked with him. Ed Dunlop wrote in his blog:

“He’s tough, durable and a hardy trier, but he’s relaxed enough to travel and a kind horse to boot. He embodies many of the aspects a trainer longs for in his horses and while he doesn’t have a flashy pedigree or wasn’t an outstanding yearling, he’s proof that quality can come in many forms.”

Red Cadeaux will continue to be supported in his recovery by top equine vets, ensuring his rehabilitation is as smooth as possible. Once fully recovered, Red Cadeaux will enjoy his retirement at his new home at Living Legends, a renowned home for top retired racehorses in Australia.

Whilst racehorses receive the best veterinary can and every step is taken to reduce the chance of a racehorse incurring an injury, as with participation in any sport involving speed and athleticism, there remains an inherent risk of injury. British Racing is open and transparent about the risks involved and over the last 15 years, the equine fatality rate has fallen by one-third (from 0.3% to 0.2% of runners). A study by Liverpool University found that 63% of ‘traumatic injuries’ (ranging from grazes and fractures) suffered by a sample of leisure and competition horses occurred when turned out in the field, compared to 13% during ridden exercise.

Updated on 30th November 2015:

Sadly, Red Cadeaux passed away on 20th November following complications from surgery.

His trainer, Ed Dunlop, had nothing but praise for the popular racehorse:  "This is my saddest day in racing. Red Cadeaux was a much-loved member of our family and my thoughts are with his owner Mr Arculli and my staff, particularly Robin Trevor-Jones and Steve Nicholson, who spent every day caring for this horse. Unfortunately the complication was irreversible and the decision to euthanise [Red Cadeaux], whilst terribly hard, was made in his best interests.  Red Cadeaux has given us and the racing public so much joy competing with great distinction across the world. He was an incredibly tough competitor with a wonderful nature and he will be dearly missed by all."

Red Cadeuax’s final resting place will be Flemington racecourse, the track at which Red Cadeaux made history by three times finishing runner-up in the Melbourne Cup. 

Photos courtesy of Racing Post and Ed Dunlop Racing (@EdDunlopRacing)