O'Brien and O'Donoghue in team tactics inquiry
AIDAN O'BRIEN and jockey Colm O'Donoghue have been ordered to appear before the stewards of the BHA in London after it wasdecided that the alleged team tactics employed by Ballydoyle in the Juddmonte International merited an inquiry.
In a surprise development, the disciplinary panel will meet with O'Brien and O'Donoghue later this month to determine if the two men broke the rules of racing in the Newmarket showpiece on August 23.
Controversy followed the victory of the O'Brien-trained Duke Of Marmalade, who was presented with a gap against the fence four furlongs out when O'Donoghue appeared to pull his pacemaker mount Red Rock Canyon off the rail after first looking over his shoulder to see the Murtagh-ridden favourite behind him.
BHA media relations manager Paul Struthers said: "We have completed the review process and written to Aidan O'Brien and Colm O'Donoghue confirming that they will need to appear before the disciplinary panel in connection with a possible breach of Rule 153(iv) in the Juddmonte International.
"We are obviously conscious ofthe interest this will generate but, having reviewed the video and read comments attributed to Johnny Murtagh in the press, it was felt that a formal inquiry into the incident had to be held. This will ensure that the matter is considered thoroughly, fairly and openly.
"This is the first time we have reviewed a race for a possible breach of 'team tactics' since the rules changed in 2007 and we are satisfied that there has been no other race where an inquiry should have beenheld. I would also like to make clear that there is no possibility of the result of the Juddmonte International being affected."
The inquiry is expected to take place in the week beginning September 22.