Sport » Horses
Jockey Chase Maujean has been handed a R60 000 fine for the way he rode a horse when it dead-heated to win a much talked about race at Turffontein on 26 September.
Half the penalty, R30 000, is suspended for a year provided Maujean is not found guilty of a repeat contravention of Rule 62.2.2.
Maujean’s mount Puerto Manzano shared the spoils of a seven-horse Maiden Plate with stable companion Thumbs Up, ridden by Raymond Danielson. Remarkably, both horses raced in the colours of co-owner Laurence Wernars.
The stipendiary stewards, unhappy with the effort Maujean put in, convened a formal inquiry on Tuesday 20 October.
A National Horseracing Authority (NHA) press release later in the week stated that, while riding Puerto Manzano, Maujean “changed his crop into his left hand at about the 150m and struck Puerto Manzano to which this gelding clearly responded. He then changed his crop back into his right hand, for no apparent reason and this resulted in a pause in his riding of the gelding.”
It continued: “Thereafter the vigour with which jockey Maujean rode Puerto Manzano up until about the 75m, after this gelding had responded to the use of the crop in his left hand (as stated above), was not to the standard expected of a competent and professional jockey.”
Maujean pleaded not guilty to the charge. He has a right of appeal against both the finding and penalty imposed.
This minor race and its aftermath has gained notoriety in racing circles as Wernars – one of the biggest racehorse owners in South Africa – has ceased all his racing involvement as a result.
Wernars, a member of the NHA board, wanted to testify about the pre-race instructions given to the riders of his horses. However, he was excluded from the inquiry as it was decreed he had a conflict of interest.
Wernars resigned his directorship and pulled the plug on racing more than 100 horses in training.
For more news your way, download The Citizen’s app for iOS and Android.