Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Top Downs jockey suspended over missing mats

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The Manitoba Horse Racing Commission has suspended Assiniboia Downs jockey Larren Delorme for six consecutive racing days.

The Commission's ruling, dated July 31, 2010, states: "For conduct prejudicial to the best interests of racing and for violation of rule 43 (1), the licence of jockey Larren Delorme is suspended for six consecutive racing days commencing Aug. 6, 2010 through to Aug. 18.

"Additionally he is denied access to the grounds of the Manitoba Jockey Club at Assiniboia Downs racetrack both front and back, but excepting the trailer park for a period of five days, Aug. 4-8, 2010 inclusive."

Asked if the suspension had anything to do with a MHRC arbitration decision dated July 3, 2010, between trainer Jared Brown and Delorme and his wife Jennifer, who is also a trainer, Delorme, who currently sits atop the jockey standings with 47 wins, simply said, "pretty much."

That decision dealt with 28 stall mats owned by Brown, 16 of which were found in Jennifer Delorme's stable.

The arbitration decision concluded, that, "On the evidence, the MHRC cannot find, on the balance of probabilities, that Jennifer Delorme was involved, other than being in wrongful possession of the mats. However, the MHRC finds that Larren Delorme was either involved directly, or has knowledge of how the mats went missing.

"Notwithstanding his knowledge he failed in his obligations under rule 43 (1), and is therefore responsible to compensate Mr. Brown for the 28 missing mats."

The MHRC also ordered Delorme, last season's leading rider, to pay to Brown the sum of $1,008 by July 29, 2010. Failure to pay would lead to a licence suspension.

"I consider this to be a private licensee matter," said David Miles, MHRC chair, who signed both the arbitration decision, and the commission ruling. "The ruling stands as is. You'll have to speak to Mr. Delorme if you want any more information."

"I wish not to comment about why I got suspended," Delorme said, adding, "I pleaded guilty for something I didn't do, because I thought I'd get some leniency if I did, and I didn't want to have to hire a lawyer, because I can't afford that."

Brown said Delorme's suspension was related to the missing mats, and that he has received the money owing him, as well as 16 of the 28 mats.

"I'm not too sure why they suspended me," said Delorme, adding the arbitration said he would only be suspended if he didn't make the payments.

 

allan.besson@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 4, 2010 C2

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