Baker stable in intensive care after St Moritz fall

St Moritz: where George Baker took a heavy fall on Sunday

PICTURE: swiss-image.ch/Andy Mettler Baker flown to hospital after St Moritz fall By Bruce Jackson 11:17AM 26 FEB 2017

GEORGE Baker is reported to be in a stable condition and awake in intensive care in a Swiss hospital after a fall on the famous St Moritz snow track on Sunday.

Baker was knocked unconscious in the final furlong of the first race on Sunday and after coming round was put in an induced coma as he was flown to a trauma hospital in Chur around 100 kilometres from the track.

His wife Nicola was flying out to be with him on Sunday evening.

St Moritz press officer Claudia Grasern-Woehrle had a positive mid-afternoon update, reporting: "He has had a CT scan which has come back clear and we are told he is awake now."

Baker was riding Boomerang Bob for trainer Jamie Osborne when two horses fell in front of them going to the final furlong.

Osborne said: "George had nowhere to go and was brought down by one of in front of him. It was a horrible fall and he hit the ice hard.

"He was put in an induced coma which is practice in these situations."

The rest of the meeting, the season-ending big card, was abandoned with Grasern-Woehrle adding: "We checked the track following the incident and we have found a hole in it, which means we have had to cancel the rest of the meeting as safety comes first."

'My horse stumbled quite badly after the line'

Christophe Soumillon was also in action at the meeting, and said of the state of the track: "There was a patch of snow about 50 metres before the winning post and I felt the horse beside me take a bad step and he fell. I was lucky not to be involved but George Baker's horse was brought down behind me and unfortunately the jockey didn't get up.

"It was the first race and there were only nine runners. Turning into the straight the snow was only up to the horses' shoes. You could see by the prints afterwards that there was water between the ice and the snow. It could be because of the temperature which is in positive figures, though I don't have much to compare it with as I have not ridden here before."

Speaking to Equidia he added: "My horse stumbled quite badly after the line and I told the meeting directors that, in my opinion, it would be impossible to stage a
16-runner race safely in those conditions, given that three horses fell in the first. They understood and in any case the jockeys were unanimous that we couldn't race on."

There were problems with the track last year when the first meeting was cancelled and the remainder were run on a straight course of 800 metres because of safety issues in the back straight.

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