Melbourne Cup-winning jockey Michelle Payne will not ride again for a number of weeks after undergoing surgery following a race fall.
Payne had successful surgery to her abdomen on Tuesday and is in a serious but stable condition at Melbourne’s The Alfred hospital, Victorian Jockeys Association CEO Des O’Keeffe told reporters.
She will spend at least the next week in hospital, O’Keeffe said.
It will take several weeks for her to recover from the surgery, which followed a fall in a race at Mildura on Monday.
Payne was initially treated at the local hospital before being transferred to Melbourne on Monday night, after telling doctors she was in acute pain.
Doctors conducted a number of tests on Tuesday before deciding on surgery, O’Keeffe said.
“That surgery has gone well, successful, and hopefully the recovery from a very fit young athlete starts really well tonight,” he said.
He said just how long Payne would have to sit out from racing would be determined over the next several weeks, based on medical advice.
“Fit athletes, very well prepared, hopefully will mean a quick recovery for her,” he said.
O’Keeffe said Payne’s family thanked everyone for their well wishes.
Payne created history when she became the first woman to win the Melbourne Cup in November aboard Prince Of Penzance.