Sunline loses her battle with laminitis
Champion mare Sunline has been put down after losing her long battle with laminitis, a disease affecting the hooves.
Her trainers and part-owners, the McKee family, announced on Friday that after exhausting all avenues to save the 13-year-old Sunline, they were left with no option but to have her humanely put down.
A world expert on laminitis, Ric Redden from the United States who has 35 years experience dealing with the equine illness, visited Sunline and the McKee family on Monday.
“It was Ric’s advice that she had lost all quality of life due to the debilitating disease,” co-owner Trevor McKee said.
Son and co-trainer Stephen McKee said Sunline had a “huge influence on our lives”.
“We will miss her terribly. We have taken the only decision available, acting on the best advice that could be obtained worldwide,” he said.
“Sunline will forever be a part of Australasian racing folklore and it has been a privilege being associated with such a champion, who we will always consider a part of our family.”
Sunline was the winner of 13 Group One races, banking a phenomenal $NZ13,700,607 ($A11,351,607) from success in 32 of her 48 starts.
Among her Group One wins were two Cox Plates (1999, 2000), two Doncaster Handicaps (1999, 2002), two Coolmore Classics (2000, 2002) and the 2000 Hong Kong Mile.
Her final resting place will be at New Zealand’s premier racecourse, Ellerslie, where a memorial will be erected in her honour.