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HRN Original Blog:
This Date in History

Phar Lap, Diane Crump - March 20th

Less than two months after she became the first woman to ride in a parimutuel race in America, Diane Crump rode her first winner at Gulfstream Park. ~1969

 

Phar Lap, legendary champion racehorse of Australia, won his only start in North America, the Agua Caliente Handicap at Agua Caliente Racecourse in Mexico. His time for the 1 ¼-mile race was 2:02 4/5, a track record. The six-year-old Phar Lap died one month later and the cause of his death remains a mystery. During his four years of racing in Australia, Phar Lap won 36 of 50 starts. ~1932

 

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Wrong poison right horse
Sydney veterinarian Percy Sykes believes poisoning did not cause the death. He said "In those days, arsenic was quite a common tonic, usually given in the form of a solution (Fowler's Solution)," and suggests this was the cause of the high levels. "It was so common that I'd reckon 90 per cent of the horses had arsenic in their system. In December 2007 Phar Lap's mane was tested to find if he was given repeated doses of arsenic which, if found, would point to accidental poisoning.
Groom Tommy killed him inadvertantly since many a horse in those days was given stimulants and, in low doses (you learn this if you drive cross country trucks) strychnie will jolt you before you begin to have seizures
RIP Phar Lap.. How horrid to come to N America only to die...