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Is this a legitimate comment in relation to Anthony Van Dyck


Hesi
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I don't think that there is any question that appropriate conditioning is required to build and maintain bone strength, especially in younger horses. Whether bone strength was a factor in the injury to Anthony Van Dyck is yet to be determined and may never be.

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How do you quantify that logic. The second horse home was having only its 5th start, had spent its early prep in Europe on the same surfaces as Anthony Van Dyke, and probably trained in a similar manner.  A bone density test is the only way to prove it ( do they do that on racing horses?). Nutrition does play a part, thyroid problems , impact training, the permutations are endless to build and thicken bones, coupled with genetic flaws maybe. Dumb comment really.

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Probably a fair comment IMHO. 

Old time trainers, the very good ones like Tonky, Shaw, Taggart etc, at Riccarton rarely raced 2 years olds and left the horses on Dr Green for a year until late 2 year olds for bone strengthening.

Fractured pasterns,  severe shin soreness and bone tendon releases were very rare back then. Leo probably has a point. 

I would be more concerned with the Werribe track surface, seems to be an issue there. 

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45 minutes ago, Hesi said:

We haven't seen a full report on the incident yet

AVD's injury, may yet have been as a result of contact with another horse, the video is not clear

True. It may be. But if you watch the above presentation you will hear that most catastrophic race day fracture injuries are not really due to the race day incident that may appear to have caused them. That's paticularly so for fetlock fractures. They are due to gradual degradation of bone and joint cartilage and that is related to the nature of the bone conditioning that has occured prior.

I think that is the point that the post you reported in the head post here was making and is most likely.

Edited by curious
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1 hour ago, Turny said:

I would be more concerned with the Werribe track surface, seems to be an issue there. 

I'm not so quick to blame Werribee. The track will be firm like most tracks there. It is tighter than some tracks, and maybe that is an issue putting different strains on animals than what they are used to. But the quarantining situation is known before horses come out. The internationals are likely to face firmer ground in quarantine in Australia wherever they put them. Some of them are going to be asked to race on tracks like Caulfield - which has some sharp bends and tight corners.

Maybe the conditioning they get at home is more important than trying to address what they see as issues in Australia.

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11 minutes ago, mardigras said:

I'm not so quick to blame Werribee. The track will be firm like most tracks there. It is tighter than some tracks, and maybe that is an issue putting different strains on animals than what they are used to. But the quarantining situation is known before horses come out. The internationals are likely to face firmer ground in quarantine in Australia wherever they put them. Some of them are going to be asked to race on tracks like Caulfield - which has some sharp bends and tight corners.

Maybe the conditioning they get at home is more important than trying to address what they see as issues in Australia.

Yes. That's exactly the point I was trying to make and clearly what Professor Chris Whitton is saying in the above. It's not the hard track, tight turn, bump, mis-step etc that directly causes the catastrophic injury. It's the pre-disposing bone conditioning.

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It's well worth a watch I think, especially if you are a trainer or other particpant at the coal face e.g. owner, trainer or rider. A couple of key messages for me is that this is not an exact science. We still largely have to rely on empirical observation from trainers, riders and vet exams of joint flexion pain tests etc. as well as keeping it in mind when under-performance emerges.

A good example is Catalyst which was spelled after a scintigraphy examination showed what is often referred to as "bone bruising" following a disappointing performance prior to the Australian Guineas.

I was also struck by his comments on spelling. 30 years ago spelling horses for a world leading trainer, the instructions were 2 weeks completely off then a 1 1/2 mile canter 3 days a week with a furlong of 3/4 once a week. That seems very much what he is recommending on the spelling front. Some light work to counter the de-adaptive process but enough rest to allow the bone to re-model.

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If my memory serves me right,  Catalyst has had two separate issues of 'bone bruising' .  If so, then his future may not be as bright as once thought.

Interesting also on the spelling regime.

As a former 'pony club/show ' rider, I didn't initially appreciate the significance of appropriate conditioning.  After a few years in racing, and plenty of thought, the penny dropped.

I recall being given a seven-year-old gelding to train for racing from a former show-ring friend.   He's had plenty of time to develop and mature, enthused my friend.  You won't have any soundness issues.

The said gelding went shinsore twice, had joint issues - albeit fairly minor - and really struggled with the fitness required.  Won a race but couldn't go on, and he didn't lack ability...retired sound, at least.

He was conditioned to trot strongly around the block and work in a school.  Try as I might, I couldn't convince my friend that he hadn't done his horse any favours.

I also recall reading about Japanese research on treadmill exercise with weanlings.  The horses concerned seemingly coped far better with training than their paddock-reared peers, and were able to remain in work and race for longer.

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