Michelle Payne to Miss Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival

Top jockey Michelle Payne will miss the remainder of the Melbourne Autumn Racing Carnival after the Group 1 winning hoop suffered a minor neck fracture when dislodged from her mount in the Blue Diamond Prelude for Fillies at Caulfield on Saturday.

Moments after the field in the Group 3 Blue Diamond Prelude jumped for Caulfield Race 5 on Saturday February 12, Payne was thrown from the Leigh Childs-trained Suite Success.

Suite Success came into trouble after clipping the heels of Hallowell Bell, ridden by Craig Williams, at around the 900m mark.

Payne, who must now wear a neck brace, will be out of the saddle for up to two months due to her neck injury.

Stewards have taken evidence from Williams and James Winks who was aboard fellow Blue Diamond Prelude contender Jessica Rose.

An inquiry has been suspended until a later date.

The riches of the Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival, which continues through until April 23 with Sydney Cup Day at Randwick, could still be on the cards for Payne if she recovers in time.

Payne’s career record includes three Group 1 wins to date with victories aboard the Bart Cummings-trained Allez Wonder in the 2009 Toorak Handicap and Yosei in both the AJC Sires’ Produce Stakes and Thousand Guineas last spring.

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