07 February 2019 08:31
A good geographical spread for once today with Ayr starting the day's jumping action ahead of Ludlow in the west and Kempton, on the all-weather, in the south. Camera Icon Kementari is favourite to win first-up in the Orr Stakes, Picture: AAP MELBOURNE Renegades will climb to second on the Big Bash League ladder with a win over top team Hobart Hurricanes at Bellerive Oval. But the Sixers, who also beat Thunder last week, will have the right of reply in Sunday night's blockbuster with Melbourne Stars, the last match of the home-and-away season. MELBOURNE Stars must win one of their two remaining matches to qualify for the Big Bash League finals. A NEW A-League title favourite could be crowned at the end of Round 18 with Melbourne Victory hosting Perth Glory.
Perth ($3.25) and Victory ($3.25) share top billing in TAB's premiership markets, ahead of Sydney FC ($4), Melbourne City ($9) and Adelaide ($12). MELBOURNE City ($2.15) will start favourite to beat Adelaide United ($3.30) at AAMI Park despite back-to-back losses to Sydney FC and Wellington. City could leapfrog fourth-placed Adelaide on Saturday night, having taken the points with a 2-0 win at Hindmarsh Stadium on December 16. Camera Icon Jamie Maclaren will be keen to make an immediate impact for Melbourne City against Adelaide United. MELBOURNE United is favoured to complete a season sweep of Andrew Bogut's Sydney Kings in the Harbour City.
Three horses in an active racing yard tested positive for the highly contagious disease, and the British Horseracing Authority took the extreme measure to call off meetings at four UK tracks in a bid to prevent it spreading further. The BHA said horses from the affected yard had raced on Wednesday at Ayr and Ludlow, which raised the potential for several yards across the country and in Ireland to have become infected. 'The fact that the cases have been identified in vaccinated horses presents a cause for significant concern over welfare and the potential spread of the disease and the action to cancel racing has been viewed as necessary in order to restrict, as far as possible, the risk of further spread of the disease,' the BHA said in a statement. The BHA said they had the unanimous backing of their industry veterinary committee to cancel racing on Thursday, which was due to take place at Huntingdon, Doncaster, Ffos Las and Chelmsford. It is the first time since the foot-and-mouth outbreak in 2001 — when the Cheltenham Festival was called off — that the authorities have had to cancel all racing on a day owing to an animal disease.
Alarmingly, the BHA confirmed that the affected stable, in Cheshire, had runners at Ayr and Ludlow on Wednesday, where they were in close proximity to dozens of other horses from many racing stables, including Gordon Elliott's. "The outbreak at the infected yard follows the identification of a number of equine influenza cases across Europe and the UK, including several in vaccinated horses. This is following the BHA being informed this evening by the Animal Health Trust of three confirmed Equine Influenza positives from vaccinated horses in an active racing yard. "Horses from the infected yard have raced today at Ayr and Ludlow, potentially exposing a significant number of horses from yards across the country and in Ireland. The fact that the cases have been identified in vaccinated horses presents a cause for significant concern over welfare and the potential spread of the disease and the action to cancel racing has been viewed as necessary in order to restrict, as far as possible, the risk of further spread of the disease.