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Two horses collapsed and died under mysterious circumstances yesterday before a race at Newbury Racecourse, with electrocution suspected as the cause.

The British Horseracing Authority is conducting an investigation into the deaths of Fenix Two and Marching Song before the first race at the southern England course.

Andy Turnell, trainer of Marching Song, said: "It looks like they've been electrocuted."

The local electricity board has also launched an investigation. One possibility is that underground cables, combined with the wet ground and the horses' metal shoes, could have caused the incident.

Marching Song's part owner Graham Thorner added: "Three people said they were getting a shock off the horse."