Just days after jockey Nathan Klink registered the biggest win of his career across the border in the Gr1 Castle Tankard, he was given one of the heaviest censures for exceeding the twelve-strike crop limit, since new penalty guidelines were introduced last month.
Klink, the 2022 OK Grand Challenge winning rider, won the Tankard on Ideal View for trainer Debra Swanson on Saturday 6 May at Borrowdale Park.
But three days later, he was on the red carpet at the Vaal after getting the 25-1 Time Spirit home in a R70 000 MR 67 handicap for trainer Paul Matchett and owner Mano Pandaram.
Time Spirit beat the favourite Absolute Value by under a length and Klink was adjudged to have gone 5 strikes over 12 limit.
Watch the replay here – Time Spirit is in the blue and gold silks:
The Stipendiary Board, in consultation with Klink, agreed to allow him to sign an Admission of Guilt for a contravention of Rule 58.10.2 (read with Guideline M on the use of the crop) in that he misused his crop by striking Time Spirit 17 times in the entire race.
Klink signed an Admission of Guilt and a suspension of 7 days and a fine of R20 000 was imposed.
When assessing the penalty, the Board took into consideration the number of times the crop was used, and Klink’s recent record with regard to this Rule and Guideline.
His suspension and fine will be of token compensation to the backers of the beaten favourite.
Klink posted the first win of his career on Nico’s Chick at Flamingo Park on 16 July 2018 for the Bill Human stable.
Crop guideline penalties increased on 14 April 2023.
For the sake of calculating penalties, contraventions from 1 September 2022 are taken into account.
In the Cape Town Met in January, both winning rider Richard Fourie and runner-up Gavin Lerena were fined for exceeding the crop limit – both by one strike.
Fourie was fined R25 000, while Lerena got R15 000.