Australia risks ostracism from international series racing and the future of commingling of bets is in limbo after the Hong Kong Jockey Club confirmed yesterday it will take a 'measured and step-by-step approach' to renewing pressure on Racing NSW to uphold jockey Chris Munce's 30-month ban from racing. The ruling body of horse racing in the state of New South Wales overturned decades of international co-operation on Wednesday with its decision not to reciprocate last Monday's stewards' ban on Munce, who had been jailed last year under the Prevention of Bribery Ordinance. Racing NSW agreed to reciprocate 35 of the 36 charges to which Munce pleaded guilty in the stewards' hearing but refused to uphold the final charge 'because this penalty is tied to a breach of a criminal offence under the criminal code of the Hong Kong SAR that does not exist under Australian law'. Munce has been licensed and is expected to ride in races as early as next week. The Jockey Club will not withdraw licences of Australian riders in Hong Kong, but there will be questions over future licensees, and the Global Sprint Challenge, Asian Mile Challenge and future commingling of bets may be affected. 'The jockeys should not be punished for something they have not done, but our concern is that, if there is a breach of the rules will we again face the situation that Australian authorities will please themselves about whether penalties are upheld?' Jockey Club chief executive Winfried Engelbrecht-Bresges asked. 'As for series racing and commingling, we have to ask how can we co-operate if there is no sense of co-operation on both sides?' Engelbrecht-Bresges said the club 'believes the offence does exist under Australian law' and has engaged senior legal counsel to investigate, while the club takes another path to putting pressure on Racing NSW's obligations under Article 10 of the International Agreement on Breeding, Racing and Wagering. 'We want to take a measured and step-by-step approach and the first thing will be to request reciprocation by other licensing bodies within Australia,' he said. 'Secondly, we will ask for clarification from the Australian Racing Board, a signatory to Article 10, on the claim that Racing NSW is not a signatory to the agreement. If ARB does not speak for all racing jurisdictions there, then there is no agreement at all.' He said the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA), the peak world authority, had been briefed, as have all members of the executive committee of the Asian Racing Federation (ARF), of which Engelbrecht-Bresges is chairman. 'Other ARF jurisdictions will be asked to endorse the disqualification and we will formulate where we go after that,' he said. 'If they endorse the ban, this will be communicated to Racing NSW. This reciprocity of penalties across jurisdictions is a cornerstone of the integrity of horse racing. If you look at the wording of Article 10, there is no discretion. If we cannot establish this then the whole international agreement goes back to zero. What will happen if others take the same attitude?' Engelbrecht-Bresges pointed out the actions of Racing NSW came after Munce had pleaded guilty to all charges then waived his right to appeal. 'By pleading guilty and then not appealing, Munce has accepted his guilt and also the penalty,' he said. 'Racing NSW has not respected the judicial process and, in light of remarks by its chief executive, even before the stewards' hearing was concluded, there is the perception that minds were made up.'