Simple solution to unfortunate waste of time

Robin Parke

IT would be reasonable to assume that our Stipendiary Stewards are a well-informed, well-paid, highly professional body of men who can read a race or at least see what is going on.

So why was it necessary to put back all subsequent races by five minutes and keep punters waiting for almost 15 minutes before getting paid out for the second event? This was the race where defending champion jockey Basil Marcus and Space Rock clipped the heels of Sagar and came down.

The 'inquiry' sign was immediately flashed and racegoers informed to hold all tickets.

But why the wait - and why was it deemed necessary, at this stage anyway, to interview three jockeys involved in the incident? Apart from their own observations, the Stewards have immediate access to film footage from seven cameras.

It would take only a cursory glance to establish that the fall could in no way be attributed to foul riding on the part of Sagar's jockey, John Marshall, and therefore the placings must remain unaltered.

Once the weighed-in had then been posted the race-meeting stewards could proceed, if they deemed it necessary, to take evidence from the jockeys involved.


Simple really.

EYEBROWS were raised when 10-pound claimer Alex K. S. Yu was declared to ride Golden Heart in the Centurion Trophy yesterday.

Race conditions do not permit claims and Yu has had only a handful of rides in his career so far.

He is not even permitted to ride in the local riders' races.


Quizzed about the surprise engagement, Yu's master, Steven S. L. Leung explained that he was keen to give the lad a taste of big race atmosphere although he did not believe the horse had much of a chance.

It can be said that Yu has landed with a very good master. Since he first arrived at the track he has ridden virtually every good horse in Leung's yard, landed his first winner and has taken part in a major Hong Kong race.


It must be sincerely hoped that it does not go to his head because the lad does have ability.

It is also an interesting contrast to how Patrick Biancone, under whom Leung worked, went about shaping the career of Simon H. K. Yim.

That lad never saw a good horse for a year - about the same time that just about everyone was writing him off.