Stewards Spot on with Casela Park Decision

Sam RobertsCorrespondent IOctober 11, 2010

All credit to the BHA disciplinary panel who have handed down a three-year ban to trainer Eamonn Tyrell and jockey Jason Behan for the ride given to Casela Park at Newcastle on August 4, writes Elliot Slater.

 The incident in question was one of the most brazen pieces of ‘stopping’ seen on a British racecourse for many a long year, and in ‘warning off’ both Tyrell and Behan the BHA has sent a very strong message to anyone else considering such a ruse to think very hard or pay the penalty. The pair are the first to receive such a long ban in the last 20 years.

Casela Park was sent off a 17/2 chance with horse racing tips for the seven furlong Newcastle handicap and the Racing Post ‘in running’ comment explains precisely what occurred. ‘Held up and behind, steady headway going well when switched repeatedly from over 1f out, nudged along and kept on strongly last 100 yards, never near to challenge.’ A more blatant act of ensuring the horse did not win can barely be imagined.

What seems to have really riled the BHA is that they easily proved that both Tyrell and Behan failed to tell the truth when asked to explain the ride, actions on their part that only served to ensure that they received a more severe punish than might otherwise have been the case. It appears that that plan had been to have a ‘quiet’ run at Newcastle then go to Musselburgh two days later and put the money down. They did put the money down two days later at Musselburgh, but the horse, (possibly feeling the effects of two races in 48 hours), proved good enough only to finish fourth.

These days, with the evidence of TV pictures from every angle, the monitoring of mobile phone calls and other means of surveillance, trainers, jockeys and owners intending to mislead those looking at racing tips for today and the racing authorities have a much tougher task than was the case even 10 years ago.

Hopefully any others considering a similar ‘plot’ to that of Tyrell and Behan, will now think again.