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Trainer Motion Remembers Sopran Basilea

The mood was somber at Barn 82 on the Oklahoma Training Track as a sprinkle of rain fell early on the morning of Aug. 4. Trainer Graham Motion stood outside his shedrow and remembered a brave filly named Sopran Basilea .

The day before, the 4-year-old filly was euthanized on the Inner Turf course at Saratoga Race Course following the running of the Glens Falls Stakes (G2T). She had finished fourth, but on the gallop out, Sopran Basilea fell

And then she was gone.

Dr. Sarah Hinchliffe, the Senior Examining Veterinarian for the New York Racing Association, said the filly incurred a catastrophic injury to her right front leg according to NYRA.

“It’s terrible, just no way around it,” Motion said. “Manny (jockey Franco) said she felt great all through the race, and, galloping out, she suddenly took a funny step.”

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Owned by Madaket Stables, LLC and William Strauss, Sopran Basilea came to the Glens Falls after winning the Robert G. Dick Memorial Stakes (G3T) at Delaware Park on July 1. She had made three starts in the United States after starting her career in Italy.

“She had trained straight forward since we had her,” Motion said. “She was coming off a win … I feel so bad for the owners.”

This is the hard part of the game that no one wants to see. When it does happen, it devastates everyone in the barn.

“It is what we all dread,” Motion said. “You try to take every precaution you can. We had friends with us and you try to explain to them that you are always relieved when the race is over and then you are looking to see them come back. You always worry about them.”

Sopran Basilea, a daughter of Night of Thunder , was bred in Ireland. She had six wins, six seconds and a third in 17 career starts. 


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