McCain supports Hughes in appeal against lengthy ban
Donald McCain has backed Brian Hughes in his appeal against a ten-day ban handed out by the Stratford stewards following a prolonged inquiry on Sunday, when the jockey found himself in hot water for failing to dismount winner Clondaw Draft quickly enough after the horse had pulled up feelingly.
McCain said: “I back Brian as I've no issue whatsoever with him and neither does the horse’s owner Tim Leslie. He got off the horse as soon as he realised there may have been a problem, pure and simple.
“Brian is one of the senior riders in the weighing room and prides himself on being one of the more caring jockeys. The horse has a history of problems and issues that are there for all to see – he has missed two separate seasons in training.”
Clondaw Draft was left with the 2m3½f handicap chase at his mercy when Mango Cap, who was upsides and challenging at the time, came down at the final fence.
The trainer added: “I was not at Stratford and watched the race on TV, but the cameras went off before the horse pulled up. However, I believe Brian dismounted as soon as he was not happy with the horse’s action – he said he felt short in front and jumped off.”
Hughes was angered by the ban and his appeal will be heard at the BHA on Friday week.