Jenny - Clean

RACING Victoria chief steward Terry Bailey will next month urge integrity officers from around Australia to amend the controversial disqualification rule after a jockey weighs in light.

PATRICK BARTLEY reports in THE AGE that last Thursday, Daniel Moor weighed in half-a-kilogram light after winning on Zuhayr in the opening race at Seymour.

Zuhayr, the $4.80 third favourite, was disqualified and Moor was fined $2500. He is yet to decide whether to appeal.

But Bailey believes that the rule should be amended to exclude winners. He also maintains that a horse who wins a race but whose jockey weighs in light should be deemed a non-starter.

''I know the whole matter can't be perfect but what I believe is that if a horse has won a race those punters who have backed it surely deserve their money back,'' Bailey said on Saturday.

''If you don't amend the rule it seems a clear case of punters having wagered on a horse that at no stage could they collect on.''

Last year at the national stewards' conference in Sydney, a proposal that winners that weigh in light be deemed non-runners was defeated.

But Fairfax Media believes there has been a groundswell of support for Victoria's proposal in recent weeks.

Bailey said that the amendment to the Australian Rules of Racing would again be tabled in February.

It is believed that South Australia and Queensland will join with Victoria in supporting the change.

''You could see it from the other side, too,'' Bailey said.

''If a punter backs a 10-1 winner he's entitled to be paid out at the price, but if the odd-on favourite who finished third is deemed a non- starter then the winner's price will shorten dramatically.''

While the Anthony Freedman-trained Zuhayr was stripped of prizemoney at Seymour, it is not the first time that Moor has weighed in light.

Last September, at Wangaratta, he weighed in light after winning on the David Hayes-trained Aajwaad, who was disqualified.

Jockeys are weighed out 40 minutes before every race by the club's clerk of scales and they are expected to maintain that weight until they return to scale after the race.


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