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Sadness as Solwhit suffers fatal injury

There was sadness abound in the racing World today, with the news that the brilliant Solwhit has suffered a fatal fall when schooling. The Charles Byrnes trained 10yo suffered a broken shoulder when schooling at Tipperary and was sadly put down, putting an end to what was a fantastic career.


Solwhit, a winner of a fantastic eight Grade 1’s, was the horse of a lifetime for owners the Top Of The Hill Syndicate, who must also be given plenty of respect for sticking with the son of Solon, who suffered many injury problems throughout his career. He first hit the headlines when winning the Grade 2 Red Mills Trial Hurdle at Gowran in 2009, a year he would go on to taste defeat just once, with four victories coming in Grade 1 company including the Irish Champion Hurdle at Punchestown.


The following year he would chase home the brilliant Hurricane Fly for the first time in the same race, a horse he would have to follow home for most of his career over 2 miles. He would miss nearly the whole of 2011 and 2012 through injury but the trainer’s and owner’s faith in bringing him back was fully justified as he took the Grade 3 Limestone Lad Hurdle on just his second start after his return from injury.


Connections had always been keen to step Solwhit up in trip and that judgement was another well rewarded as Solwhit enjoyed arguably the greatest success of his career in the World Hurdle at Cheltenham in 2013. Ultimately the final start of his career would come when a fine second in Grade 1 in France before injury would again see him miss over a year of action. He had been getting ready for another return before suffering today’s unfortunate accident.


Trainer Byrnes told the Racing Post: “He broke his shoulder in a schooling race at Tipperary at 12 today and unfortunately we had to put him down.


“He was an unbelievable horse for me. I wouldn’t even know where to start. He has taken me to places I never would have dreamed of going. I’ve never had anything like him before and probably won’t again.”

By Kevin Walsh / Photo: David Davies/PA Archive


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