Sport Racing Spooked champion Winx gives everyone a scare at her final workout

Spooked champion Winx gives everyone a scare at her final workout

winx kicks fence
Winx kicks out with both back legs after getting a fright at Rosehill on Thursday. Photo: Getty
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Winx has passed an official veterinary examination after kicking out when apparently spooked by cameras and the large crowd at her trackwork at Rosehill.

Racing NSW vets were sent to check on the champion mare after she reared up and kicked a sponsor’s sign in the racecourse’s mounting enclosure on Thursday morning.

The vets reported Winx was free in her action and there were no issues ahead of her final race in the Queen Elizabeth Stakes on Saturday.

Trainer Chris Waller blamed himself for taking the mare’s earmuffs off after her gallop as she was presented to the media contingent gathered to capture her work-out.

The noise from the cameras appeared to spook Winx, prompting her to buck and clip the gate with her back legs.

“She’s very fresh. I shouldn’t have taken the muffs off this morning,” Waller said.

“I just wanted to take them off so you could all see her without the earphones on but as soon as I did she could hear the clicking and the clacking.

“I probably shouldn’t have done that … she’s certainly very fresh but she’s safe and ready to go.”

Later, jockey Hugh Bowman had only praise for Waller.

“I can honestly say that I feel that she’s as well going into this Saturday as she’s been ever in that four-year [winning streak],” he said.

“That says a lot to her constitution, a lot to the management of Chris Waller and his discipline over the years not to just go that extra run here or there.

The result, Bowman said, is a champion racehorse beloved by Australians who has been given the time to truly prove herself.

“The longevity … is one of the things that’s enabled that because she’s kept going for another season, and another season and all of a sudden the attention on her just builds and builds,” Bowman says.

“It’s all very well appreciating the attention she attracts here in Australia but the reality is [Winx] attracts exactly the same attention all over the world.”

And all that attention will be focused on Randwick on Saturday when Winx takes to the track one last time in front of a sell-out crowd.

-with AAP