Shane Dye has brain surgery after horrific fall at Sha Tin

PUBLISHED : Monday, 26 June, 2006, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 26 June, 2006, 12:00am

Jockey Shane Dye was unconscious in the Prince of Wales Hospital's intensive care unit last night after surgery to relieve pressure on his brain following an horrendous fall at Sha Tin yesterday.

Dye's ex-wife, Karla, and son Nicholas were flying from Sydney overnight to be by his bedside.

The New Zealander, who turns 40 next month, was riding Ambitious Marju in the second race. The gelding clipped heels and came down 1,200 metres from home, bringing down Metro Leader, ridden by Anthony Delpech, who was following him.

Delpech walked away unhurt, although he didn't ride for the rest of the programme. Dye was attended to on the track by ambulance officers for more than 10 minutes before being taken to hospital.

Dye was conscious when the ambulance left the racecourse but lost consciousness soon after. By a fortunate twist of fate, Dye was accompanied in the ambulance by renowned neurosurgeon Wai Poon, who was acting as a substitute doctor at the race meeting.

Scans revealed Dye was suffering from bleeding on the brain and Professor Poon operated on him late in the afternoon to relieve the pressure. Last night, doctors described Dye's condition as stable and said he was expected to remain unconscious at least until today.

Stipendiary stewards opened but immediately adjourned an inquiry until Dye is fit to give evidence, but it is doubtful he will remember anything about the fall given the trauma to his brain.

Many racing figures went to the hospital last night, including jockeys, trainers and Jockey Club executive director of racing Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges.

Ambitious Marju and Metro Leader escaped serious injury.