Racing: Balanchine plans in balance: Emergency operation may have saved Oaks heroine's life, but her career remains at risk

HOPES were rising yesterday that veterinary surgeons had saved the life of Balanchine, the brilliant filly who seemed likely to claim the title of best middle-distance three-year- old in Europe. But it was too soon to say whether her racing career can now be rescued.

An obstruction to the small intestine was discovered late on Wednesday after vets were called in to examine the dual- classic winner. Balanchine had begun to show signs of colic, a problem that can kill. The vets carried out an emergency operation that night.

Yesterday, Simon Crisford, speaking for the filly's owners, the Godolphin Management Company, thanked the veterinary team, including Huw Neal and Andrew Edgar of Greenwood, Ellis and Partners, for the speed at which worked. 'They did a fantastic job,' Crisford said.

'Balanchine is receiving intensive post-operative treatment. Her progress so far is satisfactory. We are constantly monitoring the situation and are hopeful of a favourable outcome.' he added.

The next few days are crucial to her recovery, but yesterday it seemed unlikely she would run again this season.

The filly spent her two- year-old days with Peter Chapple-Hyam, who trained her to two successes before she was sold by Robert Sangster to Godolphin.

She was sent to spend the winter in Dubai in the care of Hilal Ibrahim. A Classic campaign was mapped out for Balanchine and she returned to this country to be stabled at Newmarket, with John Gosden's assistant, Jeremy Noseda, overseeing her routine.

After finishing a short- head second to Las Meninas in the 1,000 Guineas, the filly took the Oaks in style. Then, three weeks ago, Balanchine put on a superb display to defeat the colts in the Irish Derby. She came home four and a half lengths ahead of the Epsom Derby runner-up King's Theatre, with Epsom third Colonel Collins again filling the minor placing.

Her owners had mapped out a campaign which would have reached a climax with a run in the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe at Longchamp in October. But her illness will almost certainly rule out those plans.

Colonel Collins, one of Balanchine's victims at The Curragh, ran poorly in the Group Two Prix Eugene Adam at Saint-Cloud yesterday. The even-money favourite could finish only sixth.

Three days ago, it was announced that Robert Sangster had sold a majority share in Colonel Collins to Gary Tanaka, an American businessman. Yesterday's run was the colt's final appearance in Europe before a career in the United States.

The son of El Gran Senor held every chance two furlongs out but was soon beaten once John Reid asked him for an effort. Carnegie, the 8-5 second favourite trained by Andre Fabre, took up the running a furlong out to win by half a length from Cafe Milano.

Chapple-Hyam, the trainer of Colonel Collins, said later: 'He hasn't run his race. He was in a perfect position at the turn. The race was run to suit him and I cannot explain it. He will still go to America and will probably run in the Secretariat Stakes.'

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: UX Consultant

£35000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: You will be working with a 8 st...

Recruitment Genius: Part-time Editor

£8000 - £12000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A unique opportunity has arisen ...

Recruitment Genius: Field Sales Executive

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: An exceptional opportunity has arisen for a pa...

Recruitment Genius: Kitchen and Bathroom Installers

£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This provider of designer kitch...

Day In a Page

Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition

Orthorexia nervosa

How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Lady Chatterley is not obscene, says TV director

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

Director Jed Mercurio on why DH Lawrence's novel 'is not an obscene story'
Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests

Set a pest to catch a pest

Farmers in tropical forests are training ants to kill off bigger pests
Mexico: A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life

The dark side of Mexico

A culture that celebrates darkness as an essential part of life
Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde. Don't tell other victims it was theirs

Being sexually assaulted was not your fault, Chrissie Hynde

Please don't tell other victims it was theirs
A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border