Jenny - Clean

THREE high-profile Sydney racing identities are set to appear at a stewards inquiry into the sale of an unraced horse to Hong Kong that has gone on to win more than $570,000 in prizemoney.

RAY THOMAS & NIC ASHMAN report for the DAILY TELEGRAPHthat champion jockey Glyn Schofield will attend the inquiry while media personality Richard Callander confirmed to The Daily Telegraph on Thursday that he has also been asked to appear at the hearing, which starts at 2pm on Monday.

“I’ve been asked to attend the inquiry as the former managing owner of the horse and Liam Prior as the contact from the Chris Waller stable,” Callander said.

Racing NSW chief steward Ray Murrihy on Thursday night said stewards had only confirmed Schofield was required to attend and were remained tight-lipped on any other persons of interest at this time as there might be more people that could assist them in the matter.

The Racing NSW investigation into the Lil Caesar sale has sent the racing rumour mill into overdrive this week.

“It’s nerve racking as I’ve never been asked to go to an inquiry in all my time in racing,” Callander said. “We will attend and answer all questions honestly as to the sale of the horse. We don’t think we have done anything wrong.”

Stewards opened the inquiry into the sale of the former Waller-trained Lil Caesar, who was sold to Hong Kong interests in October 2014 after winning a barrier trial at Rosehill.

The horse had two previous trials, finishing last of 10 horses in its first run and fourth of six horses in its second.

Callander and Australian Turf Club senior executive Tony Partridge were among the syndicate of original owners in Lil Caesar.

Racing under the name Lucky Year in Hong Kong, the four-year-old gelding has won four of its seven races, all at 1200m.

Hong Kong-based Brazilian jockey and frequent Australian visitor Joao “The Magic Man” Moreira has ridden Lucky Year — aka Lil Caesar — to two of its victories.

Murrihy was reluctant to make any further comment on the matter except to say: “We’re waiting on information from the various parties which we have requested to receive by noon (Friday).

“To be quite frank I’m not going to jeopardise (their) co-operation simply to have a line or two in the media. If I receive the information tomorrow then we will advise further.

“But there is nothing to gain and a lot to lose at this moment if I make any further comment.”

In a separate inquiry, Schofield has been charged by Racing Victoria stewards along with Melbourne-based trainer Brent Stanley over the sale of another horse named Equita.

A complaint was made to Racing Victoria stewards from one of Equita’s former part-owners regarding the financial terms of the colt’s sale to Hong Kong interests.

It has been alleged that Schofield acted on behalf of the Hong Kong purchaser of Equita and under the Australian Rules of Racing a licenced jockey is not permitted to have any interest in buying, selling, trading or leasing of thoroughbred bloodstock.

Stanley trained the unraced Equita which owners were told was sold to Hong Kong for $200,000, but Victorian stewards’ investigations established the purchase price was $290,000.

Stewards allege that Stanley kept $70,000 and Schofield retained $20,000 as a commission for acting on behalf of the Hong Kong purchaser.

The horse, which races in Hong Kong as Dancing Flames, was part-owned by Racing Victoria chairman David Moodie, who was unaware of the inflated sale price.

Stanley has been issued with four charges that relate to dishonest and fraudulent conduct. Racing Victoria stewards are continuing their investigation into the Equita matter.

Dancing Flames has won one of its five career starts in Hong Kong.

Schofield rode the three-year-old colt to a second-place finish in a Class 4 race at Sha Tin last Sunday.


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