Jockey Alberto Sanna takes full responsibility for the poor ride on Dances With Dragon that will see him spend the next month on the sidelines and he promises to make amends – if he’s given the chance.
The well-respected Italian successfully reduced his suspension from 12 meetings to 10 at an appeal hearing on Wednesday morning, which stemmed from his ride on November 17 when he pleaded guilty to failing to take all reasonable and permissible measures to ensure the best possible placing.
The saga dragged on for three-and-a-half weeks but has finally been concluded and while Sanna admits it wasn’t his best effort, he is adamant there was nothing untoward about his ride on the $37 chance.
“Of course, I made a mistake and I’m very disappointed in the ride I had,” Sanna told the Post.
“As a sportsman, everyone can have a bad day. It wasn’t my best ride and I’m angry with myself for that. That’s why I pleaded guilty.
“I’m an honest person and I admit when I make mistakes. At the same time, I didn’t plead guilty because I’m pulling horses or doing something stupid.
“All my career, I have worked hard to get this reputation as a hard worker, a nice person and a good jockey. This is the first and last time it will happen.”
The challenging aspect of this situation is the status of Sanna’s licence, which expires on December 31.
The 34-year-old is in limbo because he doesn’t know if he will get an extension from the Jockey Club, but confirmed he will apply for it.
It has been a tough 15 months for Sanna, who missed a large chunk of last season through two serious injuries (a shattered hip and a broken ankle), but he has bounced back this term with nine winners from limited opportunities, including one at Group Three level.
“I came with the big hope of being one of the top riders here. After I complete this [suspension] that will be the next challenge for me – to get more support and to ride more winners,” Sanna said.
“Even under the pressure of this charge, I was still riding winners. I believe with the rides I’ve been getting, I’ve been doing well this season.”