M11 horror ends race days for Wiltshire owner's horses

The horsebox and one of the cars involved in the pile-up; inset, left, owner William Harrison-Allan and, right, trainer Brian Meehan

The horsebox and one of the cars involved in the pile-up; inset, left, owner William Harrison-Allan and, right, trainer Brian Meehan

First published in News by

West Wiltshire racehorse owner William Harrison-Allan fears one of his top class animals will never run again after being involved in a horrific motorway crash.

Da Do Run Run was on its way to race at Newmarket on Thursday when its horsebox was involved in a multiple pile-up which left two people and a horse dead.

Mr Harrison-Allan, who is chief executive of the Country Gentleman’s Association and lives at Baycliffe Farm, Maiden Bradley, near Warminster, said: “People died in this crash so we have to put things in perspective and think about them first but the injury to this horse is a huge blow to us.

“It was due to go to the sales just after the race at Newmarket where we had expected it to run very well. It would have had a reserve price of £100,000 but we expected it to go for much more than that. It had come second in an important flat race at Epsom and also had a future as a jumper. We are hopeful it will recover but it is doubtful it will run again.”

Da Do Run Run was in the back of a horsebox from Brian Meehan’s yard at Manton, near Marlborough, which was badly damaged in the crash on the M11. The horsebox was at the front of the crash which also involved two cars and a lorry. The lorry driver was arrested at the scene but has not been charged.

The horse that died, Pistolero, was owned by Mr Meehan and used to settle other horses on the way to the starting stalls.

Mr Harrison-Allan said: “Da Do Run Run was in the back of the horsebox with Pistolero. They were trapped when the car went into the box and possibly did most of the damage to themselves as they were so frightened.”

Mr Harrison-Allan was at an important meeting to do with the sale of Salisbury City Football Club, in his role as club chairman, when he took the call about the crash.

He said: “I was shocked to hear what had happened. It must have been terrible for everyone who was involved.”

Mr Meehan said: “The staff on board the box were in a state of shock after the accident. We would like to send our sincerest condolences to the families of the people who lost their lives. They are foremost in our thoughts.”

His four stable lads and the horsebox driver have had counselling from Racing Welfare and are back at work.

Three other horses trained by Mr Meehan were treated by vets in Newmarket but have now been discharged.

The M11 was shut for hours after the collision just before 2.15pm last Thursday. Two Dutch people from one car died and two people from another were taken to hospital.

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