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Tuesday, 23 October, 2018

BHA criticised for basing its case on evidence of Carter

Harry Stewart-Moore: the BHA 'relied on some frankly very odd arguments in an attempt to fill the void where its case ought to have been'
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The solicitor who represented John Wainwright and John Wright on Thursday criticised the BHA for basing its case against them on the evidence of a jockey who "has never managed to tell the same story twice".

Harry Stewart-Moore also said the BHA should have withdrawn the charges when former jockey Adam Carter withdrew his allegations against Wainwright and Wright during the hearing. 

Stewart-Moore said: "Mr Wainwright and Mr Wright are naturally extremely pleased to have been found to be entirely innocent of the allegations made against them by the BHA.

"These were highly unusual proceedings, with the BHA deciding to base its case entirely on the evidence of a jockey who even the BHA believes has been lying from the outset and who, having been given four separate opportunities to tell the truth over several years, has never managed to tell the same story twice.

"The BHA would do well to remember that as a regulator its job is not to secure a conviction at all costs but rather to ensure that a fair outcome is reached.

John Wainwright: 'I've been not guilty all the way through but it's something I don't what to happen again'

"With that in mind we were extremely surprised that the BHA did not withdraw the charges against our clients after Mr Carter’s extraordinary oral evidence but instead relied on some frankly very odd arguments in an attempt to fill the void where its case ought to have been."

Anyone who can survive three decades as a trainer knows how to take the rough with the smooth and John Wainwright's main emotion on being cleared of corruption was relief that the ordeal was over.

He reckoned Adam Carter's decision to change his evidence made the BHA inquiry "a bit of a fiasco" but was always confident he would not be found guilty of any wrongdoing and thanked his friends and family for standing by him.

"I was very surprised when there was a case but there was a fair hearing and it has come right," the trainer said after being found not to have breached any rules over the running and riding of Blazeofenchantment at Southwell in June 2014.

"It was a bit of a fiasco down there. Carter must have changed his story about five times, but now it's all over and I can get back to normal."


Newark Festival 2014 Handicap


Thursday's published verdict showed that Blazeofenchantment was judged by the disciplinary panel to have been "about as blatant an example of a non-trier as one could get".

"It all happened over three years ago, but at the time I thought there was something strange," said Wainwright, 59. "Carter had gone out of racing and then out of the blue in May it came in the post that I had been charged.

"It's a young jockey who has played with the game and been caught. It's just a shame others got dragged into it. I only used him as a rider because he was on site and he rode work for me once a week.

"I've been not guilty all the way through but it's something I don't what to happen again."

George Duffield: the first to offer support to Wainwright

Reflecting on the support he received before, during and after the inquiry, Wainwright said: "My wife Fiona stood by me really well. It wasn't easy for her and she had to run the yard.

"It was hard going to the races on the Sunday after the hearing but everyone I knew was very supportive. It hasn't been nice but they all stood by me – George Duffield was the first one to come up to me, he rode for my father and I've known him all my life.

"My owners were fully supportive right through. My two longest-serving owners, David Brown and Ian Barran, go back about 20 years and they phoned more or less very day. They know me and they've seen the good times, but this was the bad time.

"I'm nearly 60 and, although I can't do some of the things I used to do, I'm still enjoying it, but this has been a bad few months. I'm just glad it's over."

Carter must have changed his story about five times, but now it's all over and I can get back to normal

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