IT’S ALL ABOUT THE “D” WORD
(Source: Ian Franco Palaz Zolo)
It’s called disclosure, and from what we have learned from the saturation media coverage of the biggest racing story since the Fine Cotton scandal, whichever way you analyse the Gai Waterhouse/John Singleton heavyweight title fight last Saturday at Randwick, the “D” word is what it’s all about.
(Source: Fox Sports)
Sure, the very public and very ugly bust-up between NSW racing’s two heavyweights had been bubbling over for some time, circa Gai’s left field and, to this day, less than satisfactorily explained decision to choose the wide alley in Australasia’s premier weight for age championship – the Cox Plate last October.
Singo was ropable then and remains so to this day. It has left the legacy of a very nasty odour and taste around an unexplained brain fade by Australian racing’s most high profile person and personality.
Hard to blame Singo, who, we suspect, has not only never forgiven Gai, but hasn’t forgotten either.
(Source: Deviant Art)
As one of the many commentators observed, More Joyous is much, much more than a racehorse to Singo. She is probably his greatest love, if not his truest love. And Singo knows a thing or six about affairs of the heart, having tied the proverbial knot six times during his colourful seventy one years on this planet.
(Source: Daily Telegraph)
As we observed a few editions ago, the estrangement between Singo and Gai was accelerating over the past few months.
Singo was spreading his horses among different trainers – his old mate Clarry Conners was continuing to train for him, while Peter Moody, Gerald Ryan and Kris Lees were starting to train horses in the blue and white Strawberry Farm colours.
(Source: Herald Sun)
But last Saturday was when it got murky, very murky, and played out publicly, in of all places the newly christened “theatre of the horse” at Randwick. Not a bad venue for a former stage and television actress and a high profile ad man.
(Source: Open Letters Monthly)
The Singo versus Gai clash however spiralled out of control with some other very public figures becoming part of the entrapment in the process.
Husband Robbie, himself a very high profile Sydney rails bookmaker, son Tom, whose public profile through his corporate bookmaking business and television and on-line saturation marketing omnipresence makes him one of the most recognizable faces on and off the screen, were in one corner.
(Source: Punters Paradise)
In the Singo camp was retired jockey and close mate Alan Robinson. In the middle, high profile former Rugby league legend Andrew Johns, more than just an acquaintance of both camps.
(Source: Life Is Local)
Mentioned in dispatches in all, of this is Eddie Hayson, a mate of both Robinson and Johns, known for his mammoth punting exploits who also happens to own Sydney’s biggest and best known brothel, Stilettos, which many, many NSW racing figures are intimately familiar with- and, by the way, going downhill so fast with a bang, we hear it’s been seriously looked at by Hong Kong Chinese investors.
(Source: The Punch)
The nub of the story goes something like this. Last Thursday, two days before she was scheduled to run in the All Aged Stakes, More Joyous was reportedly treated with antibiotics by Gai’s veterinarian for “heat in her neck region”.
Singo’s veterinarian was reportedly either present or aware of the treatment or both, as was Singo’s Racing Manager Duncan “The Grimley Reaper” Grimley.
(Source: Athlone Associates)
Curiously and quite possibly in breach of the Rules of Racing, the Racing NSW Stewards and its chief Ray Murrihy were not informed of the problem or the treatment.
On that night, and, reportedly, in a corporate box at an NRL game, Andrew Johns and Tom Waterhouse had a discussion about the forthcoming final day of the Sydney Autumn carnival and its feature races.
According to Andrew Johns, Tom Waterhouse supposedly told him that he did not think that mamma’s horse, and Singleton’s favourite racehorse More Joyous could win the All Aged Stakes.
Yet, following the race, and after the blow-up, Tom Waterhouse claimed that he backed More Joyous and Epaulette and laid the winner All Too Hard and his transactions on the race cost him $300,000. Two very different stories from two key players in the saga.
According to ex-jockey Alan Robinson,he called Singo on Saturday morning to tell him that a “very good friend” had called him and told him that More Joyous had problems and cautioned him about backing her.
(Source: Curious Crochet)
That “very good friend” of Robinson has been widely speculated to be Eddie Hayson, himself a good friend of Andrew Johns.
It has also been subsequently revealed by Singo that he too had spoken with Andrew Johns, who had conveyed the same information about More Joyous.
(Source: Daily Telegraph)
The odd person out in this he said is Gai Waterhouse. To date there is no evidence that Gai had called Singo and updated him on More Joyous’ condition and discussed whether the mare was fit enough to take on such a hot Group One assignment.
Perhaps if she had done this, the circus and murkiness surrounding another unwanted racing scandal headline could have been avoided and the unwanted angst that it has caused all parties, including son Tom, would also have been avoided.
The dirty linen being trawled across print and electronic and on-line forums would take up the space on a conga line of Hills Hoists in every backyard in Sydney’s sprawling western suburbs.
(Source: Open ABC)
What should not be forgotten is that today’s society demands disclosure and heavily penalizes those that clearly have failed to do so, be it through negligence or deliberate. Racing, and for that matter any other sport, is no different.
With millions of dollars wagered each day on sports of all kind, disclosure is mandatory.
(Source: Terrific Mentors)
In this instance, and pending the official Stewards inquiry on Monday when it is expected there will be more clarity about much of the rumour and innuendo, it will be surprising if Gai doesn’t cop a fine for not disclosing to Stewards More Joyous’ condition.
It matters not whether she was deemed fit to take her place in the All Aged, public disclosure is paramount.
For someone who has done so much to promote racing and plays by the rules, Gai Waterhouse must be dismayed at how this whole scenario has played out and damaged her reputation and the already damaged Tom Waterhouse brand.
But the bottom line is that no one should be above or beyond the rules of racing.
(Source: Daily Telegraph)
STEROID HYSTERIA GETTING OUT OF CONTROL
Hypocrisy and horse racing are joined at the hip. The steroid controversy in the UK involving Godolphin trainer Mahmood Al Zarooni has brought the “lillywhites” in the UK training ranks, as Peter Moody has called them, and some equally attention seeking “mother Teresa” types in Australia out of the closets in which they have been hiding for some time.
(Source: Muslim Matters)
The claims splashed across the UK press by trainer Roger Charlton and some of his Pimms drinking fellow trainers alleging that the recent successes of the Australian sprinters in some of the UK’s most prestigious Group One sprints, can be attributed to the use of steroids in out of competition training to build their constitution and enhance their performances is as laughable as it is a desperate attempt to discredit Australian racehorses and Australian racing.
(Source: Crazy Laughs)
The good old poms just can’t get used to the reality that they no longer produce the best horses in the world. And what’s even more unpalatable is their position as the epicentre of racing and breeding is being challenged on all fronts and particular by Asia – Japan and Hong Kong and heaven help, from the former penal colony of Australia.
For the poms, throwing the odd handful or two of mud at the Australian rules of racing relating to the use of steroids out of competition, is the perfect distraction- particularly with another English trainer Gerard Butler putting his hand up and admitting that he too administered steroids on veterinary prescription to some of his horses.
Makes you wonder aloud how many other Gerard Butlers and Al Zarooni’s are still operating under the code of silence about their use of steroids in the UK.
(Source: Books And Boys)
For the uninitiated, in Australia, steroids are commonly prescribed and used in racehorses while they are out of competition for many therapeutic reasons – primarily to assist in their physical development and their appetites.
Steroids cannot be administered to horses in training, and trainers of horses testing positive to anabolic steroids while racing or in training, face severe penalties if found to be guilty of breaching the rules of racing.
It is a black and white rule which has been place for a long time. Significantly it is difficult to recall when a horse last returned a positive test to an anabolic steroid in Australia.
It would come as no surprise if the Al Zarooni and Butler cases are the tip of a very large iceberg which the British racing authorities will be doing their darndest to hose down if not use the largest sized vacuum cleaner to sweep away any evidence very swiftly under the proverbial carpet.
You see, there’s plenty at stake here for the Brits and Godolphin in particular.
The more Godolphin, Sheikh Mo and his mouthpiece Simon Crisford take the moral high ground and vent their rhetorical venom on Al Zarooni, the more questions are raised as to both the competence, professionalism and management of the racing operation and, more tellingly, their knowledge of what was going on.
Let’s not forget that Al Zarooni was sanctioned last year when urine samples from two of his horses returned positives. And Sheikh Mo himself found himself with a very large size omelette on his face a few years ago when some of his endurance horses also returned positives in his own backyard competing in the Arabian desert.
(Source: Quiz As Unaexpressioning)
Tellingly, it is no secret that Sheikh Mo takes a very keen, close and passionate interest in his Godolphin and Darley racing empires. He is as hands on as one could be from his palace in the Emirates.
(Source: Sheikh Mohammed)
So it is a tad strange that he would not have read the proverbial riot act, presumably with a scimitar by his side, to everyone associated with his racing empires across both hemispheres.
This increasingly makes one wonder whether Al Zarooni took one for the team and whether this is only the tip of the sand dune and one that has already severely damaged the Godolpin brand which is why damage control is taking place even as write.
(Source: Down Town Monks)
We’re tipping that this is not going away and just might be karma for the shoddy way the great Frankie Dettori was treated after years of loyalty.
Meanwhile the “keepers of public morals” in the Australian racing industry have been trampled in their scramble to claim the moral high ground, taking to the airwaves to demand Australian racing fall into the conga line with the mother country and ban the use of steroids on racehorses- full stop. But for what reason?
(Source: Kansas State Fair)
Anabolic Steroids are already banned from being used in horses in training and racing. End of Story.
Perhaps it is the Poms who should revisit their policy on steroids.
If the English veterinarians are prescribing their use on racehorses, then surely they are making some sort of a statement?
Wisely, the Australian Racing Board has not knee jerked its response. It has decided to review the policy, which is exactly what should take place.
In fact isn’t it about time the International Federation of Horse Racing Authorities reviewed all of its policies in relation to therapeutics?
Surely with the giant strides in medical, veterinary and scientific research, so much more is known about the use and administration of therapeutics and the quantities which need to be administered to enhance performance.
And yet, many of the medication rules in relation to the use of therapeutics appear increasingly outdated.
(Source: Green Book Blog)
ANOTHER BIZARRE TWIST IN THE WALLER CASE
(Source: Blog CDN)
The trainers who were whingeing at Randwick last Saturday about the outcome of the Stewards inquiry into three of Chris Waller’s horses returning positives to Ibuprofen, will be even more agitated if the reported statement attributed to the feed manufacturer Agricure’s Director Ray Biffin is correct. Biffin???
(Source: Dynamic Syndications)
Quoted on the Breeding and Racing website on Wednesday, Mr Biffin stated: “Agricure would like to advise all users of Mitavite feeds that this contamination apparently appeared in a feed supplement that was being trialled by Chris Waller Racing under our instructions and guidance.
This supplement was manufactured in Agricure’s own facility and is in no way connected with the manufacture of Mitavite feeds”.
The ambiguity in the statement will certainly send the hairs on the back of Waller’s neck skywards. It is so poorly written it beggars belief.
(Source: Cinderella Hair)
Surely the feed supplement which had the ibuprofen was not being trialled by Chris Waller with his knowledge and consent?
Agricure has an obligation to clarify their statement, and put a full stop to any rumour and innuendo though, Alice, it’s all getting so curiouser and curiouser, it would even blow The Mad Hatter’s mind.