Woman injured at Virden horse show

Spooked horse tips cart throwing driver

A woman was injured in an accident at the Virden Draft Horse show at the Virden fairgrounds on Saturday. Her identity isn’t known but she was one of nine participants in the Ladies Cart class.

This normally slow and stately event involves carts with two large wheels hitched to a single horse, in this case heavy draft horses like Belgians, Clydesdales and Percherons.

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But this time, something went wrong and several of the horses spooked.

As the horses and carts paraded around the edge of the show ring, officials watching from the centre, suddenly one of the animals began to run out of control across the arena.

That startled several other horses who also went out of formation and ran, their drivers trying desperately to control them.

Driver down

One of spooked horses was racing towards the back end of another cart; to avoid colliding with it, the speeding horse veered sharply to the left, throwing its driver to the ground.

Immediately, other drivers, judges and volunteers ran to her aid but she remained immobile until the ambulance arrived. Attendants spent several minutes stabilizing her where she fell, then placed her on a back board and took her to hospital.

Before the ambulance arrived, the remaining horses had to be brought under control and removed from the ring. One of them was in such a panic, it nearly rammed into the railing near the bleachers where the audience sat. Amazingly, nobody else was hurt.

After the ring was cleared, the scheduled programming continued by bringing the remaining competitors in the Ladies Cart class back in to finish their event. The Draft Horse Show was scheduled to run more events on Sunday.

A spokesperson for the event said the woman was bruised and not seriously hurt. 

© Virden Empire-Advance

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