A stablehand employed by Melbourne Cup-winning trainer Danny O’Brien has died while riding after being involved in a car crash in southern Victoria.
Police said the male rider was killed after his horse was hit by a car on 13th Beach Road at Connewarre near Barwon Heads about 6.45am on Monday.
Police said the rider, believed to be in his early 30’s, died at the scene on the Bellarine Peninsula while the horse suffered minor injuries.
In a statement, Racing Victoria said: “The rider, who was employed by the Danny O’Brien stable, is believed to have been struck by a car whilst riding their horse”.
“The unraced horse was transported from the scene and remains under veterinary supervision.”
Racing Victoria has set up counselling for Mr O’Brien and his staff.
“RV extends its sincere condolences to the family and friends of the track rider, some of whom are yet to be notified,” their statement reads.
“RV asks that the privacy of Mr O’Brien and his staff be respected at this tragic time.”
The ABC reported a spokesman for the stable said they were “devastated”.
According to the Danny O’Brien Racing website, the 13th Beach Training Facility is a 64 hectare private training complex with sand and turf tracks and is located two kilometres from 13th Beach and “is specifically-zoned a horse beach”.
The driver of the car also suffered minor injuries.
Worksafe is attending the scene and police will prepare a report for the Coroner.
The latest fatality in Victoria over the Labour Day long weekend comes after two men and a woman were killed on Sunday when a tree fell on to their car in the Dandenong Ranges at Kallista, east of Melbourne.
The large gumtree came down on the moving car and pushed it down a steep embankment.
More to come.