Ronald McDonald Charity pacer at Motukarara

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The horse racing for a great cause is due to have his first start under his new ownership at Motukarara on Sunday, September 27, 2015.

Spirit Eclipse is a standardbred racehorse that severely fractured his leg in a training accident in November 2014. This was a life threatening injury for the horse in that only two treatment options were available; euthanasia or attempt surgical repair of the fracture, in the hope that the horse would race again.

Witnessing a fighting spirit in the horse, Canterbury Equine Clinic stepped in to save him.

With Spirit Eclipse a symbol of hope, the idea arose to use this opportunity to raise funds for a much bigger and wider-reaching cause, The Ronald McDonald House South Island.

Canterbury Equine Clinic successfully performed surgery on Spirit Eclipse.

All costs associated with his surgery, convalescence and now on-going veterinary care have been donated by the Canterbury Equine Clinic.

After four months, Spirit Eclipse was fit to resume training again.

A Spirit Eclipse syndicate, made up of Spirit Eclipse Charter Members, was formed to cover the costs of his training, provided at a significantly discounted rate by trainer Nigel McGrath.

These Spirit Eclipse Charter Members are people from the general population who have embraced the opportunity to fundraise for an incredible cause. They have each donated $250 to join the syndicate.

The Spirit Eclipse Syndicate will race the horse. He will race in specially commissioned Ronald McDonald House South Island colours.

All stake money won during Spirit Eclipse’s on-going racing career will be donated to Ronald McDonald House South Island.

In addition to that, all money left over after racing expenses from the Charter member contributions will also go directly to Ronald McDonald House South Island.

At the end of his racing career, Spirit Eclipse will be retired with a good home already arranged.

Spirit Eclipse is to race at the Banks Peninsula meeting at the picturesque Motukarara Raceway on Sunday (27th September). He is competing in the aptly named Spirit Eclipse-Racing For Ronald McDonald House (SI) Pace at 4.36pm.

There is already interest from several news and media outlets to cover the race. Hopefully he will be able to give everyone something wonderful to cheer about.

For more information visit

Courtesy of Stacey Markham,

Marketing & Communications Manager | Harness Racing New Zealand Inc


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