Superstar jockey Hugh Bowman has been suspended for six weeks for causing one of the more dramatic and controversial race falls in Australia.
Bowman immediately released a statement apologising to fellow rider Andrew Adkins and sent his condolences to the connections of thoroughbred Hot 'N' Hazy, who had to be put down after the opening race at Rosehill, Sydney last Saturday.
Bowman was found guilty of shifting out from the inside on his mount Smart Image, causing Hot 'N' Hazy to clip heels. Hot 'N' Hazy hit the track hard; the fall even more dramatic as it was well into the home straight and the field tightly-packed.
The incident left Adkins in hospital with multiple injuries which are set to sideline him for at least six months.
Bowman pleaded not guilty to the careless riding charge and provided stewards with 19 still photos as he gave an explanation for his riding, claiming the high-profile incident has had "an effect on me and my family".
In a statement, the regular rider of now-retired champion Winx wished Adkins a "full and speedy recovery".
"I have spoken to Andrew to convey how sorry I was for the accident and he was in good spirits after his operation which was very pleasing and reassuring to hear," said Bowman.
"Having been involved with horses for all my life, I know how tragic the loss of a horse is for all concerned."
Take a punt
Choosing between Kevin Myers-trained runners can be fraught with danger for punters but they can be a little more confident than usual in race three at Awapuni today.
The meeting hosts five jumping races and Myers has three reps in the open hurdle, but because he hasn't spoken to the media in a decade, which horse Myers favours in a race is often a puzzle for punters.
But they can rest assured Aigne is the best of Myers' hopes as the stayer who contested the City of Auckland Cup in January shapes as one of the country's more promising hurdlers.
He has two wins from three starts over the jumps, handles heavy tracks, and with Dean Parker claiming 3kg will carry the equal-lightest weight in the race.
That adds up to his $2.30 opening price looking fair money for punters.
Far shorter price
Bookies won't be giving punters anything like the luxury odds they got last week about Self Assured at Addington tonight. The New Zealand Cup favourite opened a remarkable $2.70 in his comeback race last Friday and sat parked to win, pacing his last 800m in 54.5 seconds.
He meets the same rivals tonight under the same conditions so should win but at a far shorter quote.
Tonight's meeting also sees the return of former Trotter of the Year in Sundees Son in the main trot.