What’s Up With The Stipes…

Don't call me - I'll call you...

Did jockey Marco van Rensburg get a PR raw deal from the Stipendiary Stewards at the Vaal on Thursday?

Marco van Rensburg

Marco van Rensburg – getting some air time

While perusing the official Stipes Report we noted that it was recorded that ‘An Investigation will be opened into comments made by Jockey M van Rensburg during the post-race interview’.

This was after Van Rensburg had replaced S’manga Khumalo and ridden a good race to get the Sean Tarry-trained Mombela home in the seventh race.

In the interview, Van Rensburg alluded to the fact that he had spoken to trainer Tarry on the phone before the race.

Stipendiary Stewards apparently then called Van Rensburg in and informed him that it was against the rules for a jockey to use his mobile phone from the jockey room.

56.2.4 states:

Save with the consent of a STIPENDIARY STEWARD, no RIDER, during the period stated in RULE 56.2.2, shall have contact with anybody outside the JOCKEY’S quarters or weighing room other than the OWNER or AUTHORISED AGENT of the OWNER or the groom of the HORSE he is riding, the RMR on duty and LICENSED OFFICIAL for the RACE MEETING concerned, nor shall he take into the JOCKEY’S quarters or weighing room nor make use of any type of telephone, transmitter or similar device for communication purposes.

Mobile phone

Van Rensburg is said to have explained that he had not used his phone, but that as he was a late replacement for Khumalo. the trainer had wanted to give him instructions so had phoned his head groom, who had then handed his phone to the jockey.

Van Rensburg apparently then fetched his own phone and showed the Stipes that the last call he had made was before 10h00 – hours prior to the first race of the day.

So satisfactorily explained?

To have then incorporated a suggestion of an inquiry in the Stipes Report, after ‘accepting’ the perfectly viable explanation,  is probably unfair as it clearly infers potential wrongdoing on the jockey’s part – or does it not?

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