Jimmy, the half-brother to Black Caviar who was purchased for $5 million at the Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale in April, is battling for his life after developing laminitis.
Jimmy was bitten by what is believed to have been a white tail spider two weeks ago and was taken immediately to the Werribee Veterinary Clinic for treatment.
The son of Redoute’s Choice was recovering well from the problem but suffered anti-biotic derived diarrhoea that led to the onset of laminitis.
Simon Marshall from BC3 Thoroughbreds, who own the pricey colt, told Racing Ahead that the issue started as a minor irritation but has now developed into a very serious problem; with Jimmy only a fifty/fifty chance to survive the painful ordeal.
“Less than two weeks ago our staff checked Jimmy, as they do every couple of hours, and they noticed that he was looking down at his right forearm and there was bit of puffiness there,” Marshall said on RSN.
“They brought him in and he was just irritated by it more than anything.
“We rang our vet Tom Brennan straight away and he came out to have a look at him and his temperature had sort of spiked a little bit so they sent him straight to Werribee.
“They treated the forearm and the symptoms all led towards the spider bite.
“He was due to come home after about five days but then he deteriorated badly.
“He had a severe reaction to the antibiotics and laminitis followed and when laminitis follows you are in a lot of trouble.
“That is where he is right now.”
Jimmy was set to be trained by Team Hawkes, who prepared his half-brother All Too Hard, and although hewas yet to enter proper training, Marshall said that the well-bred colt had thrived during pre-training and gave every indication that he would be ready to make his debut during the 2014 Autumn Racing Carnival.
“We were working closely with Johnny Hawkes and he was broken in,” Marshall said.
“He had a good couple of months at BC3 and he was sent to Flemington at John’s there to have a full education.
“He trotted, walked and cantered on all tracks and rolled up a couple of evens I believe.
“He came back from a five week break and was really well.
“When we brought him back to pre-training for a couple of days we put a saddle on him and he trotted and cantered like he never left the place.
“He had all the smarts and the indicators were that he was a very forward horse for his age at two and loved work.
“He came back to BC3 and had a little bit of a rest in the paddock before he was going to be sent to Johnny Hawkes to then probably head up to Sydney for the tail end of this spring.
“Johnny was just going to play it by ear and give him a break before bringing him back for the autumn.
“He would be tested fully then to see where we were at and everything was right on track until this leg blew up.”
Marshall said that the entire team at BC3 Thoroughbreds were devastated but remain hopeful that Jimmy can survive the painful affliction and return to their property in Sutton Grange, where he is treated with a great deal of love and care.
“Where we are at right now is that Jimmy is in a critical stage of the development of Laminitis and for him we really hope that he can survive this,” Marshall said.
“I really feel for our staff at the property because they do such a great job.
“We have morning and afternoon staff that are really dedicated to their jobs and they love our horses dearly.
“He was a light in shining armor and they all loved Jimmy and loved giving him a pat every day.
“He was probably checked every two hours a day and for this to happen is unbelievable.
“The unfortunate thing about nature is that these things can happen to horses.”
BC3 Thoroughbreds also own Belle Couture, a half-sister to Black Caviar, and the filly is expected to make her racing debut before the end of the year.