January is usually our busiest month of the year with two big Moruya meetings, including Moruya Cup, which brings many of our owners to town for the weekend of racing. This January has been very different with not a single horse racing following a bush fire emergency on New Year’s Eve and the evacuation of all our horses from our bush lined stables to their paddocks near the river.
We received a RFS text message on New Year’s Eve at 6am and with the help of our amazing team and John Peiti who owns the paddocks we spell at, we were able to evacuate all 26 horses off our property in only 2.5 hours.
We were unbelievably fortunate the wind changed to a Southerly in time to stop the fire reaching our stables and home.
With the risk too high to return to the stables immediately, the horses spent the first two weeks of 2020 spelling in groups of three or four, something most of them haven’t done since they were yearlings since most racehorses spell individually to minimise injuries.
Despite power and communications being down, Racing NSW sprung into action to help all the Moruya trainers and their ongoing assistance over the past month has been incredible.
Most of the horses have been back in work for three weeks now, with minimal interruptions from smoke, and we are hoping to have our first runners for 2020 at Sapphire Coast at the beginning February. The Moruya Showcase meeting, including the Moruya Cup, has been rescheduled for April 12th.