Willie Mullins-trained Marasonnien one of two equine fatalities after Fox Hunters' chase at Aintree
Two horses died after collapsing during the Crabbie's Fox Hunters' Chase on the first day of the Grand National Meeting at Aintree on Thursday.
The Willie Mullins-trained Marasonnien and Clonbanan Lad from the yard of Louise Allan were both pulled up during the two-mile-five-furlong event which was staged over the National fences.
Professor Chris Proudman, Veterinary Advisor to Aintree Racecourse, said:"Clonbanan Lad and Marasonnien were pulled up during the Fox Hunters' Steeple Chase by their jockeys, but later collapsed, and despite the immediate attention of veterinary professionals were not able to be saved. Neither incidents were associated with a fall.
"You can never remove all risk completely from any sport, including horse racing, but from 90,000 runners each year British racing has a fatality rate of less than 0.2 per cent, which research found is far lower than horses simply exercising in a field.
"This is down from 0.3 per cent over the last 15 years and we must keep working to see that continue to decrease."