Back off! Jockey whips opponent's horse during race
Although racing is not a contact sport, it can often involve bumping and barging as the riders attempt to establish the best position possible.
While this can lead to some disagreements in and out of the weighing room, Robert Morales took matters into his hands at Delta Downs during a race.
Morales was aboard Delicious, on the inside of Chaosmos, ridden by Eddie Martin Jr. Approaching a turn the two runners bumped into each other on more than one occasion, one too many for Morales's liking.
Thanks to the reader who pointed out this bit of "race riding" at Delta Downs Feb. 16 (R5) involving Robert Morales on 2nd place finisher Delicious (inside horse of 2 horses bumping) and Eddie Martin Jr. on Chaosmos. Stewards lit inquiry but made no change. pic.twitter.com/y33pqXKUEX— Ray Paulick (@raypaulick) February 21, 2018
The jockey decided the best way to get his rival to back off was to administer a couple of backhanders to his opponent's horse. The tactic paid off, as he went into the bend without any more close attention and went on to finish second.
Surprisingly, the stewards held an inquiry, but decided not to take any action.
Creative use of the whip in the US seems to come naturally to jockeys, as David Cabrera showed when he lost his whip at Oaklawn Park this month.
Cabrera responded by using a pair of goggles as a makeshift whip to urge his mount La Key forward, and the pair won a $76,000 allowance race by three-quarters of a length.
Although fined $200 by the Arkansas Racing Commission for using an instrument that was not a whip, Cabrera's agent Jose Santos Jnr thought it was punishment worth accepting.
He said: "It definitely was a difference-maker in getting her home, so I'm glad he had the quick thinking to do that. It's just a fine for the jockey. The purse doesn't get taken away. No fine to the owner or trainer, nothing like that.
"He knew he had more horse left. It was just kind of spur-of-the-moment thinking and he decided, 'All right, time to go to the goggles'."