Davy Russell: hit with bans totalling 17 days by the Clonmel stewards
PICTURE: Patrick McCann (racingpost.com/photos)
By TONY O’HEHIR 4:25PM 29 SEP 2016
DAVY RUSSELL refused to take his remaining rides at Clonmel on Thursday after being hit with a 17-day ban by the stewards, 14 of which were issued for “verbally acting in a manner prejudicial to the proper conduct of horseracing”.
The Cheltenham Gold Cup-winning rider finished first past the post on Little Folke in the 2m½f maiden hurdle but runner-up Solar Heat, ridden by Rachael Blackmore, was awarded the race after a stewards’ inquiry.
The view from the head-on camera appeared to show Russell’s whip striking Solar Heat on the head three times as the pair came together in the closing stages.
That was just the start of a dramatic series of events as Russell was given a three-day ban for improper riding and then a further 14 days for improper conduct for his reaction to the initial suspension in the stewards’ room.
In response to the punishment, the jockey refused to take up his other two rides, with Danny Mullins stepping in on Swantykay (4.05) and Ruby Walsh on Not For You (4.35).
Russell declined to comment on the incident as he dashed away from the course. The matter has been referred to the Turf Club for further investigation.
This was not the first controversy at the track involving Russell as he was given a five-day ban, which was later reduced to two, for bringing racing into disrepute when borrowing fellow rider Phillip Enright’s whip early in a race in December 2014.