RACING POST TEAM SUNDAY JANUARY 29th 2012
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TODAY'S CARDS Leopardstown. Ffos Las. Sedgefield.
JON LEES "WALSH SET TO APPEAL AGAINST 'HARSH' BAN
RUBY WALSH yesterday signalled he was likely to appeal against a three-day suspension that rules him out of the Betfair Super Saturday fixture at Newbury in two weeks' time and puts in jeopardy his participation in the following day's Hennessy Gold Cup day at Leopardstown.
"Walsh felt harshly dealt with after being found guilty of careless riding on PEARL SWAN, who finished a short head in front of GRUMETI in the JCB Triumph Hurdle Trial.
"Paul Nicholls' stable jockey reported that he had not infringed the careless riding rules since at least 2006, but the
Cheltenham officials believed that he did here and deemed that PEARL SWAN had improved his placing by drifting right and interfering with his rival.
"Walsh said: "I think I have to appeal. I haven't been suspended for careless riding for along time. The interference was minimal. There was only a short head in it so they reversed the verdict. I feel three days is very harsh.
"I have to go home and have a look at it. My gut instinct is telling me I'll have to appeal. I haven't looked into deferring it. I just think it's wrong that three days is your starting point."
"The days of the ban, February 11, 12, and 13, will prevent Walsh riding CJB Triumph Hurdle winner ZARKANDAR, the hot favourite for the £152,500 Betfair Hurdle, formally theTotesport Trophy, and HOLD FAST in the Grade 2 Game Spirit Chase, but he could apply to have the second day deferred as the following day's Leapordstown card features Grade 1 racing."
J MARGARET CLARKE TURFCALL
THE BRITISH HORSERACING AUTHORITY'S ATTITUDE
The Rip Off
Culture, a Sick and False Society. Britain
Shocking Conflict of Interests within the present Rules of British Horseracing and how these present rules are being read by bloodhorse illiterate steward stewarding. Creating division and maximum confusion, and bad feeling.
RUBY WALSH attempted manoeuvres to win this race looked bad, it was a very close finish. A finish as this would have been far more exciting and acceptable to watch if it had been a hands and heals finish, the fact that Ruby Walsh used his whip harshly and frequently, this may well have been the cause of PEARL SWAN running off a straight course, taking the ground of GRUMETI
Taking the easy option quick fix to go for the whip, with perhaps scant regard for the effect on the horse being hit and the other competitors close up. Do we really want to have a day out at the races to watch horses ridden until they collapse from exhaustion, soured of racing ever after?
Taking a closer look at horseracing as a whole, it is noted there are many different sections that need to function properly for horseracing to reach its true potential, to move on, in the right direction without bloodhorse illiterate interference. We do have a big problem here make no mistake about that.
Licensed riders need to take on board the fact that unsightly whipping, flogging the living daylights out of a horse to force the horse past the winning post by fair means or foul makes a shocking impression on people.
If this bad practice continues on British horseracing will fail. To watch horses suffering horrendous falls, laying out dying on the track, to read in the daily papers of riders off after heavy or awkward falls seriously injured, almost an every day occurence, one surely realises there is something going seriously wrong here.
The 2012 Cheltenham Festival and the Aintree Grand National look like sitting ducks at present for a repeat performance of last year.
Perhaps the only thing to do in the present pradicament is to ban the use of the whip from three fences out, all riders to use hands and heals only. Everyone needs to understand this especially the punters.