Jockey Gets $100 000 Fine

Now Chapa's feeling the shock!

That looks suspicious

That looks suspicious

Texas Racing Commission executive director Chuck Trout has imposed a $100,000 fine on jockey Roman Chapa, who was initially fined $25,000 and suspended five years after it was determined he carried an electrical shocking device during a stakes victory.

The $25,000 fine and suspension were meted out to Chapa, 43, by stewards at Sam Houston Race Park following Chapa’s victory aboard Quiet Acceleration in the Richard King Stakes at Sam Houston Race Park Jan. 17. Under Texas rules, the matter was referred to Trout, who had the authority to increase the fine.

Stewards began the investigation a day after the race after Chapa contacted the track photographer, Coady Photography, about removing from the track’s website a photo from the race that apparently showed the rider holding an object in his left hand. Chapa was summarily suspended and has not ridden since.

In using authority to permit him to increase the fine to $100,000, Trout cited Chapa’s two previous suspensions for possessing devices to affect a horse’s performance. In 1994, his first year of competition, Chapa was suspended nine months and fined $2,500 by stewards at the Gillespie County Fair in Texas after the jockey admitted using a nail on a horse during an Aug. 13 race.

In 2007, the New Mexico Racing Commission fined Chapa $1,500 and suspended his license five years after discovering he possessed an electrical shocking device during a race at Sunland Park Feb. 17 of that year.

Trout’s order increasing the fine does not affect the five-year suspension nor the disqualification of Quiet Acceleration, who has been declared unplaced and not entitled to any of the purse money.

Trout also rejected a request for a stay made March 4 by attorney Angus McGinty, who appealed the disciplinary action on behalf of Chapa.

“No evidence of an electronic shocking device; no evidence or insufficient evidence a device was used to influence a race; no evidence or insufficient evidence contraband was possessed; and arbitrary and capricious ruling by the stewards,” McGinty’s appeal said.

In his request for a stay, McGinty said that during Chapa’s hearing Feb. 27, “…the investigator for the Texas Racing Commission admitted that he was not aware of any other suspension which had been imposed against a jockey where no physical device or ‘buzzer’ was found. In other words, he had investigated six or eight instances involving allegations of use of a ‘buzzer’ device. All of these investigations resulted in a suspension, and all involved the recovery of the actual physical device which was alleged to be used.”

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