A group of around 50 of Marina Morel’s friends and colleagues gathered at Gulgong Racecourse on Sunday 12th February to mark the first anniversary of her death following a tragic riding accident during trackwork at Gulgong a year earlier.
ARCC chaplain Rev Colin Watts conducted the ceremony while Marina’s close friend Rhenelle Perry and trainer Brett Thompson addressed the gathering.
A memorial garden, which was unveiled on Gulgong Cup day in June, provided the backdrop to the proceedings and has itself proved to be very therapeutic for those who lovingly tend it regularly in honour of Marina.
For the anniversary, a metal artwork was commisioned, taken from a photo of Marina with her favourite horse.
Marina’s family in France were very appreciative of the memorial and sent a greeting to those who attended: “We would like to thank you for your messages and presence to pay tribute to our Marina, and hope that you will remember all the good times spent with our daughter. A huge thank you to Rhenelle, Donna and Rev Colin for this ceremony, as well as the people who participated”.
Riding accidents are an all-too frequent occurrence in racing, with significant impacts on families and racing communities. Racing Chaplains work with those affected and alongside other industry support networks to help people through these traumatic times.