Queensland gun James Orman turned a dominant winning ride into a lengthy ban when the star jockey was caught attempting to deceive stewards while weighing in a whopping 1.7kg overweight at Ballina last month.
Orman will spend a month on the sidelines and miss Gold Coast Magic Millions day after he was found guilty of two charges by Racing NSW stewards in a bizarre incident across the border on Monday, November 23.
The jockey, who sits second in the Queensland premiership, was charged in the aftermath of his convincing 2½ length victory aboard the Chris Anderson-trained Penasquito in the final event of the Ballina meeting.
Northern Rivers chief steward Mark Holloway confronted Orman for his conduct when weighing in following the race.
Jockey James Orman will be unable to ride at the Magic Millions. Photo: AAP Image/Trackside Photography, Grant PetersSource:AAP
Orman had weighed out at 57.4kg but tipped the scale at 58kg coming in and when Holloway asked the jockey to remove his riding gloves his weight fell to 57.7kg.
The experienced steward suspected something was awry.
After changing his viewing position, Holloway asked Orman to weigh in again and noticed the jockey was resting his leg against the face of the scale. When Orman moved away from the face into the centre of the scales his weight came in at 58.7kg.
Stewards charged and found Orman guilty at the meeting under AR229(1)(a) for corruption, dishonesty and misleading behaviour.
He was also sanctioned under AR211(1) for returning to scale in excess of half a kilo over his declared weight of 57kg — allowing for the protective vest — and fined $400.
Had Orman accepted he was 1.7kg overweight, he would have received a fine but the winning result still stands and he wouldn’t have been banned.
Racing NSW chief steward Marc Van Gestel was at the appeals hearing. Picture: Getty ImagesSource:Getty Images
However, he maintained his innocence to the ARR229 charge throughout the inquiry and travelled to Sydney on Tuesday in a bid clear his name in front of the NSW Appeals Panel.
While he admitted his leg was touching the scale, Orman maintained it was because he was “flat out standing up” due to exhaustion from wasting for the meeting.
He said he came into the meeting needing to lose 2.8kg and spent the morning sweating to make weight.
When he arrived on track he still had a further kilo to lose to ride the 57kg allotted to Penasquito in the last but by the time the race had arrived the wasting had taken its toll, according to the hoop.
“I would have been stood down if I had any more rides on the day,” Orman said.
Stewards disputed this claim and used footage of Orman dismounting as well as in the mounting yard to support their argument.
Jockey James Orman is out until the New Year.Source:News Regional Media
“I put it to you that it is a convenient excuse that you accidentally pushed against the scale when you intentionally did,” Racing NSW chief steward Marc Van Gestel said, who put forward the stipes’ case to the Appeals Panel.
Van Gestel quizzed Orman as to how he got so far over his allotted impost when he weighed out for the ride at 57.4kg and the latter said he had consumed “two to three” cups of iced ater.
It was an excuse that Racing NSW stewards also didn’t accept, finding it implausible the jockey could put on that much weight in such a short amount of time.
The Racing NSW Appeals Panel agreed with the stewards findings and upheld Orman’s month long suspension. It will see Orman sidelined from Friday, December 18 until January, 18.
Originally published asStar hoop caught trying to deceive stewards
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