CARDROSS harness racing trainer Kate Attard is on the road to recovery from pelvic and spinal injuries following a race fall at the Mildura Harness Racing Club in April. PICTURE: PAUL MENSCH
By MITCH RODD
CARDROSS harness racing trainer and equine specialist, Kate Attard, is back on her feet.
Mildura Weekly readers may remember our story with the 41-year-old back in April, who was counting her lucky stars after a nasty racing fall.
Kate suffered multiple pelvis fractures and spinal bruising after being thrown from her sulky during a race at the Mildura Harness Racing Club on April 2.
The qualified equine dentist and musculoskeletal/equine sports therapist has worked hard in recovery and is now moving on her own two feet, and looking forward to returning to work.
Kate’s father, Pat, and 15-year-old daughter, Charli Masotti, have helped run Kate Attard Equine while she has been rehabilitating at home.
“I’m on the road to recovery and walking again now although I have a slight limp because one leg is now shorter than the other,” Kate said.
“I haven’t got clearance to work again yet but hopefully within the next couple of months I can reach that point.
“I think it was 13 weeks of no weight-bearing movement. I remember checking the step counter on my phone and I’d only done about 50 steps in the first week!
“I’ve been continuing work with a physio, although those sessions have moved to over the phone now with the current climate.
“I think I was frightened to put any weight through my legs initially, and I’d also lost my core strength, so I wasn’t really able to stand or walk without holding on to something.
“We’ve got horses in work too, so that’s been hard not being able to get out there and help, or boss anyone around.”
Kate is keen to return to working with the horses in her stable, although she admitted it’s unlikely she will return to the race track as a driver.
“Charli and Dad have been doing most of the work and we’ve had a few other people help out at times as well,” she said.
“I think in early September it’s five months since the incident, and they are looking at it being about a six month rehab process.
“I won’t go back to driving in races but I’ll be able to get into the cart and work the horses around our stables here.
“Charli is home schooling at the moment so she’s been able to help out. In such a terrible year, that’s probably been the biggest positive on a personal level, having her around to support me.”
Like others involved in harness racing, Kate said she was thankful racing has continued during the current COVID-19 climate.
“The racing industry itself is thriving,” she said. “Meetings at Mildura, and around Victoria, are really stringent with COVID-19 rules so they’re doing all the right things, and everyone who I’ve talked to is so thankful they can continue to race.”