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Horses, jockeys survive Sydney heatwave
Neda Vanovac
14:47 AEST Sun Dec 2 2012

Despite concerns that Sydney's heatwave might put horses at Warwick Farm at risk, Saturday's meeting went off without interruption, with extra vets and ice buckets on hand.

Chief steward Ray Murrihy said Let's Frolic, a two-year-old filly in the first race of the day, was mildly distressed, but the other horses had been handling the high temperatures.

As the thermostat nudged 38 degrees at 5pm, Murrihy said the racing in hot weather protocol was in place to protect horses and riders.

"They're hosing each horse as they go past, we've got misting sprays down in the stalls, we've got ice water, we're bringing the horses up late, we've had them late to track, we've got extra veterinarians," he told AAP.

"We're doing everything to ensure the horses are well looked after."

Peter Moody's Sydney representative, Claire Cunningham, had a winner in the second race of the day with Office Bearer in the Cormack Packaging Handicap.

She said the three-year-old had travelled to Sydney from Victoria on Thursday but was handling the weather well.

"He's quite a dude, obviously they sweat up a bit but it wasn't excessive today," she said.

Not so for the Pro-Ride Handicap winner Circle of Power in race six, said trainer Rodney Craig.

"He looked terrible over here, I hosed him before he came in, it was just that hot and I've never seen him sweat like that," he said.

"I did (have some concerns) because he was sweating terribly."

But jockey Glyn Schofield, who rode in seven of the eight races, said that while it was uncomfortable, the heat was manageable for both horses and riders.

"It's not the hottest, but it's still a hot day - it's a bit energy-sapping, but everyone seems to cope," he told AAP.

"The horses are alright. When they're fit and healthy it doesn't seem to bother them.

"They get a bit uncomfortable like we do, but they get through it."

Schofield said he raced at Warwick Farm in 2007 when the temperature was in the 40s with 90 per cent humidity, and doesn't recall any race meetings being cancelled due to high temperatures.

"After the race you jump in the shower, have a cold one, that helps," he said.

"It's uncomfortable but it's not impossible."


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