‘What if a jockey doesn’t try?’


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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 28/09/2021 (612 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

What if a jockey doesn’t try his best in a race?  Are there consequences?

That was the substance of a question from an At the Races reader who wrote:

“I watched the last few nights of racing at ASD, and generally enjoyed the competition and close finishes. But one particular race caused me considerable dismay. In this race, one jockey appeared quite clearly to throw away his horse’s chance to win, even though the horse was well positioned to win or at least finish in the money.

Photo by Jason Halstead / ASD “Grandstanding” cost jockey Sharmaree Muir $400

“I remember many years ago reading in the paper about fines periodically being imposed on jockeys for failing to make sufficient effort to win their races but I have not heard of such actions being taken at any time more recently. Is it still being done at ASD?”

The answer is an unequivocal “yes.” In fact, the Manitoba Horse Racing Commission wants race fans to know that there is close scrutiny of the sport and therefore posts racing infractions and fines online for all to see. To view the 19 rulings of the past live race season just Google “Manitoba Horse Racing Commission Thoroughbred Rulings.”

Readers will see that two jockeys were fined $100 for “easing before the finish line” and one was

fined $400 for “standing before the finish line.” In addition there were six fines of $200 to $400 for careless riding, one of $400 for “dangerous riding” and, in the biggest fine of the season, leading rider Jorge Carreno was fined $500 for “inappropriate conduct toward other MHRC licensees.”

While it may look great in a photo, racing stewards don’t take kindly to jockeys “grandstanding” before the finish line, either, such as Shamaree Muir’s celebratory action aboard Top of the Rock in race 6 on July 27. The jockey was fined $400 for “careless riding.”

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So, with live racing in the books what in racing do you have to look forward to?  How about winning a life-changing score for a mere 20-cent wager? That is available daily in races you can watch and wager on at ASD, at off-track venues and in your HPIbet wagering account.

And, in the middle of winter, is there anything as inviting and consoling as sitting in a Race Book carrel at the Downs, enjoying a bowl of soup (so good that I sometimes have two or three bowls) and watching and betting on races from Florida, California, Arizona and the like?

We also have the countdown to the biggest two days in racing – the Breeders’ Cup world championships from Del Mar race track in California on Nov. 5 and 6 where native Manitoban Rob Atras who is training in New York, has earned the right to race his classy mare, Maracuja, in a race for a likely purse of $2 million.

Also, of course, ASD is open every day from 9 a.m. to 2 a.m. for VLT action and all-day dining

Ivan Bigg

Ivan Bigg
At the Races

Ivan Bigg is a railbird and handicapper at Assiniboia Downs.

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