Stewards finish review of start at Geelong

Stewards finish review of start at Geelong

Racing Victoria stewards have reviewed the start of a race at Geelong and decided against charging jockey Stephen Baster for not taking part in the event.

Baster restrained his mount, the favourite Spring Choice, out of the fourth race on Friday believing it to be a false start.

The review found Strathbyrne kicked the barrier which resulted in Spring Choice and several other runners lunging forward.

Baster explained Spring Choice hit his head on the front of the barrier just before the start was effected.

Spring Choice was in the stall next to Lil’ Bit Sassy who had her head turned as the starter let them go and was later deemed a non-runner.

Baster gave evidence to stewards he heard a call to “pull ’em up” but after questioning all riders, the clerk of course and the starters, the jockey’s evidence was unable to be corroborated.

Stewards accepted the circumstances surrounding the start were exceptional, albeit insufficient to lead to the race being declared a ‘no-race’.

After careful consideration the stewards decided Baster’s actions were not culpable to a degree that warranted a charge.

Baster and all riders will be reminded that unless a false start has been signalled by the starter all jockeys must ride their mounts so as to fulfil their obligations under the rules.

Credit: AAP