Appleby vows to challenge 'scandalous' non-runner fines
Trainer Mick Appleby has pledged to lodge an appeal against two fines totalling £280 imposed by the stewards at Chelmsford on Thursday after he pulled out two runners because of high winds.
On a day when the meeting was put under threat by Storm Doris, which led to an inspection after the second race, Appleby withdrew Red Touch from the third race and declared Loumarin a non-runner due to unfavourable weather conditions, reasons which were deemed "unacceptable".
He received the fixed penalty fine alongside Chris Dwyer, who took out Saved My Bacon for the same reason. In contrast Lydia Richards, whose horse did not travel because of the risk to high-sided vehicles, was not penalised.
Appleby was among those interviewed after the course was inspected which led to the meeting going ahead after a delay.
He said: "They should not have been racing. My horse in the second Toy Theatre was getting blown sideways and that's what cost her the race. I pulled the other two out because I didn't think it was safe to race. To fine me for doing it is absolutely scandalous. I will be appealing."
Dwyer said he would also consider an appeal and said: "I thought it was a bit out of order. It was so windy and my filly is tricky in the stalls so any rattling could have set her back. My wife Shelley drove from Newmarket and there were two overturned lorries on the way."
BHA head of media Robin Mounsey said: "Inspections regarding the safety of the racecourse include representatives of trainers, jockeys, the BHA, the racecourse and veterinary officers and a decision is made whether to go ahead with racing based on a consensus of those views.
"The operating procedures state that once an inspection has been held and the decision has been made that racing should continue then a fine will be imposed on any trainers who withdraw their horses for any other reason than the state of the going. The trainers involved have the ability to appeal such a fine should they wish."