Shogun Lodge won only three races from 30 group Is he completed, but his trademark grandstand finish and great depth of courage with big weights earned him a cult following.The Bob Thomsen-trained chestnut ran second in a dozen group I races, mostly beaten by top gallopers and small margins. But the $200,000 yearling had his days with 17 victories at the expense of Sunline and many of the best horses around.
The death of Shogun Lodge, one of Australia's Thoroughbred heroes, cast a pall over the final day of the Flemington spring carnival on Nov. 8.Grand Lodge's leading southern-hemisphere son was competing in the 1,600 meters Cantala Stakes (Aust-I), the major event on the final of four days of what had been champagne racing before record crowds.The winner of $4.6 million appeared to be travelling well in his usual spot near the rear of the 16-strong field.Just 400 meters into the race, the 7-year-old warrior started to wobble and became distressed. Glen Boss tried to pull the 11-2 favorite up.The horse collapsed, Boss skidding under the collapsible aluminium rail.Boss, winning rider of Makybe Diva in the Melbourne Cup (Aust-I) four days earlier, escaped with cuts and abrasions. Shogun Lodge was dead before veterinary surgeons could reach him.It appears likely the gelding died of a heart-attack. Results of an autopsy should be released within a few days.Fittingly, perhaps, the Cantala was won by another horse with a string of minor group I placings, Titanic Jack.