Grand National fever

Controversy hits the Aintree racecourse again as two horse are put down after falling in the 2012 Grand National.

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Bookmakers celebrate Neptune Collonges win

Bookies toasted Neptune Collonges' win after punters laid millions on Seabass in the run up to the race to make it joint favourite with Synchronised.

Fred Done, chairman of bookmaker Betfred, said:

Paying out on Neptune Collonges' National victory is a drop in the ocean compared to the fortune I would have had to shell out if Seabass would have won.

Katie Walsh winning the world's biggest race could have cost me well over a million quid.

RSPCA: Grand National result should be reversed

Gavin Grant, chief executive of the RSPCA said:

The death of two horses at the Grand National, bringing the total to three at the Aintree meeting, is totally unacceptable.This is the second year running that two horses have died. In it's current format, the risks to horses are not appropriate and we want an urgent examination of the Grand National, including a number of fences including Beecher's Brook where horses are continuing to die despite safety improvements.

It would appear the whip was overused in the final stages of the race. If that is the case it is totally unacceptable and given the narrow margin of the win I believe the result should be reversed.

British Horseracing Authority to investigate Grand National deaths

Professor Tim Morris, Director of Equine Science and Welfare for the British Horseracing Authority (BHA), said:

We are very sad about the fatal injuries suffered by Synchronised and According to Pete in the Grand National. In both cases the horse incurred a fracture to the leg and the humane option was to put the injured horses down.The Grand National undoubtedly represents a challenge to both horse and rider. It has inherent risks, but, working closely with Aintree and other stakeholders, we do all we can to minimise these risks while maintaining the unique character of the race. We will examine closely the circumstances which led to both incidents.

The key data from these accidents will be collated, as is the BHA’s policy in the event of any serious equine injury. Each year the BHA and Aintree review all incidents which occur during the Grand National meeting and consider what measures can be taken to address the risk of a repeat in the future.The BHA takes its responsibility of looking after the welfare of horse and rider very seriously. It is our stated objective to continue to reduce the number of injuries and fatalities which occur in racing.

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