photo: Karen L. Myers
Anna McKnight falls early in the 4th Race
Last year’s races encountered both a hailstorm and gusts of high wind powerful enough to knock over a porta-potty containing at the time a prominent local physician. Nature, by way of compensation, this year delivered a day that seemed like summer.
As the Winchester Star reports, close to 3000 spectators attended the Blue Ridge Hunt’s traditional Spring Races at Woodley Farm near Berryville.
The meet featured 9 races, flat and over timber, and attracted competitors from Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia.
The scariest moment came early in the 4th Race for the Clarke Courier Cup when Tap Tap, a nine-year-old bay gelding, mistimed his takeoff and stumbled over a hurdle, causing jockey Anna McKnight of Monkton, Maryland to come off.
The fall resulted in a broken wrist and a compressed vertebrae and McKnight needed to be taken to Winchester Medical Center, but happily is expected to make a full recovery, and will soon be resuming riding.
Earlier in the day, Sam Cockburn, who won in his first ride last weekend at Casanova, riding the 8 year-old chestnut gelding Old Fellow in the 2nd Race One Mile Seven Furlong Amateur/Novice Hurdle also suffered a fall, and he too suffered a broken wrist. Cockburn is expected to be sidelined from racing for four weeks.
Correction 3/11: I had originally identified the rider who suffered the broken wrist as Anna McKnight, but my wife Karen assured me that I was wrong and that she had heard officials identifying the victim otherwise, so I re-wrote my posting.
Anna McKnight’s mother, Mrs. H. Turney McKnight, MFH of Maryland’s Elkridge-Harford Hunt, however, read the posting, and wrote a comment informing me that it was indeed her daughter who experienced the more serious injury last Saturday.
Further correction, 3/11:
A commenter informs me that Sam Cockburn, the jockey who fell in the Second Race, contrary to the Winchester Star report, also fractured a wrist.
My apologies for all the mistakes and confusion and best wishes to both riders for a speedy recovery.