By Jon Lees
Australia: Queensland jockey Chris McIver has been banned for 12 months for ‘stomping’ on a horse at the stalls – the third ban he has received for mistreating horses.
McIver, 33, returned from seven months on the sidelines only in November after he was stood down for whipping a horse on the head.
That sentence included an extra month activated from when he was found guilty of misconduct in 2019 for kicking and punching a horse after a race, resulting in a three-month ban, of which a month was suspended.
In the latest incident McIver faced a Queensland Racing Integrity Commission inquiry for kicking a horse at the barriers before a race last month at Rockhampton, in Central Queensland. He was found guilty of misconduct after he twice forcibly stomped on the hindquarters of his mount Or Else.
Chief thoroughbred steward Peter Chadwick said any rule breach involving the mistreatment of a racehorse must be met with a significant penalty.
“The penalty must not only deter Mr McIver but must also illustrate to the racing industry that these actions are not to be tolerated,” said Chadwick. “In this case Mr McIver also had two recent breaches of the misconduct rule in 2019 and 2020.”
McIver’s was one of four misconduct cases dealt with by QRIC, which issued a general warning to the sport’s participants to keep their behaviour in check or suffer the consequences.
Jockey Nigel Seymour was found guilty of misconduct and disqualified for nine months for sending threatening text messages to a licensed trainer.
In another incident, Brisbane-based jockey Nathan Thomas pleaded guilty to misconduct and was suspended for two weeks after he struck his mount in the shoulder with his whip after getting dislodged before a race at Mackay.
While stablehand Nick Trimble pleaded guilty to misconduct and was disqualified for three months for striking a horse in the girth while unsaddling following a race.
Chadwick said all of the incidents had a detrimental effect on the image of racing, and penalties must serve as a general deterrent to illustrate to the racing industry that these activities were unacceptable.
• Visit the Racing Queensland website