Racing on Saturday provided plenty of great racing but, yet again, the whip reared it's head when two winning jockeys were banned after exceeeding the guidelines. Andrew Thorton received a 5-day ban for hitting Tatenen ten times Ascot.
Earlier at Haydock, Darryl Jacob's got two days for going one over when scoring on Celestial Halo. The big difference is that Jacob's still received his prize money percentage, Thornton did not. This can't be right.
I agree rules have to be adhered to and if jockeys adopt a win-at-all costs attitude then ban them, as in the case of Jacobs, but if the jockey is to forfeit his prize money then so should everybody else, owner, trainer and the punter. After all, they all benefited from the jockey breaking the rules.
For me the BHA have two options. Disqualify any horse where the jockey has transgresed the allowed number - not the way forward - or let everybody benefit and hand out longer bans.
I hope the BHA quickly reject the application of Fergal Lynch to ride in Britain again. Lynch, banned in 2007 when admitting he stopped a horse, has been riding on a Spanish licence in Ireland.
It would be a travesty if Lynch, fine rider that he is, was allowed back to ride in Britain. Paul Doe and Greg Fairly were banned in December for 12 years for the same offence. Lynch needs the same punishment.
Nicky Henderson certainly scored an own goal when initially refusing an interview about the 'massive drift' on Betfair about his Champion Hurdle hope Spirit Son.
The champion trainer then blamed the exchanges for forcing him to reveal the news that Spirit Son would indeed miss the race! Two things come to mind. If it wasn't for the exchanges people could still now be blindly backing Spirit Son for the Champion Hurdle.
And, more pertinently, the reason for the drift is that somebody from the Henderson yard either used that information or passed it on to somebody else. Bookmakers and trainers may not like the exchanges but it's the best guideline to the welfare of a horse.