A cruel blow suffered in the pre-dawn hours will delay Ciaron Maher’s opportunity to ride in the world’s most challenging and longest horse race next month.
Maher, who has been riding trackwork at Caulfield for the past five weeks to get his fitness levels up to scratch to ride in the Mongol Derby in China, was thrown from Jameka on Friday, breaking his right leg.
The Winslow-raised Maher was rushed to The Alfred hospital where surgeons started a four-hour operation before lunch.
Jameka was uninjured in the accident and will have a trackwork gallop on Saturday morning to see if she’s up for another racing campaign.
The Caulfield Cup-winning trainer was to join Annabeal Neasham, his sales and communication officer, riding in the Mongol Derby, a race over 1000 kilometres.
But after the fall Maher called on the services of his horse breaker and good mate Adrian Corboy to fill his place. The break at the top of the right femur means the four-time Warrnambool Grand Annual Steeplechase-winning trainer will be unable to drive for months.
A Mongol Derby Gala Ball, raising funds for Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, will go ahead as planned on Saturday, July 21 at Caulfield Racecourse. Maher will be in attendance on his crutches.