The death of a “much-loved” jockey in Darwin has sent ripples through the racing community, just a day after another female rider died in Victoria.
Melanie Tyndall, 32, who is also a police officer, had been riding at Fannie Bay when her horse fell during the third race and she later died in hospital on Saturday night.
Tyndall’s death comes just a day after apprentice jockey Mikaela Claridge died from injuries suffered in a trackwork accident in Victoria.
South Australian jockey Eran Boyd tweeted she felt numb.
Thoroughbred Racing NT and the Darwin Turf Club confirmed Tyndall’s death in a joint statement on Saturday night.
“Melanie’s mount Restless appeared to clip the heels of another runner, she became unbalanced and was dislodged near the 300-metre mark,” the statement reads.
Tyndall was treated at the scene, taken to the Royal Darwin Hospital and later died.
“Melanie was a much-respected member of the Northern Territory racing family and her sad passing will be felt by many within the industry,” TRNT chief executive Andrew O’Toole said.
Darwin Turf Club chairman Brett Dixon said her death was deeply saddening, before sharing condolences to her family and friends.
The tributes continued with Australian Jockeys Association chairman Des O’Keeffe telling AAP it was shattering to learn of the death of the much-loved Northern Territory jockey.
“Mel was a much-loved and highly-respected and successful jockey who had achieved great things in her professional career and outside the world of horse racing,” he said.
“The thoughts of all Australian riders are with her family and her Northern Territory colleagues at this time.”
Trainer Michael Hickmott took to twitter to pay a “remarkable human being”.
“If people only knew the hurdles you conquered in your life to make what you did of yourself,” he tweeted.
“We were all so proud of what you achieved. You defied the odds.”
Like so many others I just feel numb. It's so hard to comprehend loosing another friend & fellow rider. These past 2 days have absolutely shook our industry. Heaven has gained another angel. RIP Mel💔
— Eran Boyd (@EranWithAnA) August 31, 2019
Libby Hopwood, who retired after suffering brain injuries in a fall in which a rider was killed, tweeted: “Simply lost for words. Sometimes the price of this industry seems too high.”
In 2013, jockey Simone Montgomerie died on Darwin Cup day after falling from a horse.
TRNT and the Darwin Turf Club will hold a media conference on Sunday afternoon.