22 April 2011

Stipes ban everyone but themselves at whip grab inquiry

Both jockeys involved in last week's bizarre 'whip grab' incident have been suspended by Racing Queensland Limited Stewards at an inquiry concluded yesterday, Thursday. Senior rider Shane Scriven copped a five-month suspension for improper riding after grabbing the whip of apprentice Ben Looker in the straight during a Class 2 event at Ipswich on April 15. Looker was suspended 2 weeks for failing to report the "unusual happening" to Stewards immediately after the race. Scriven had handed back the whip to the stunned apprentice after passing the winning post. Looker must count himself unlucky to cop any reprimand, given that stewards laid no charges against themselves for failing to act at the time, including not lodging their own protest or disqualifying Scriven's mount, Requested, which eventually ran second in the race. We understand Looker's obligation to report the incident, but are Stewards now relying on jockeys to do their job?

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