New Zealand Jockey May Face Lifetime Ban

Posted: 14th July 2014 by Polina in Betting Basics

A New Zealand Jockey has had his license revoked and may be facing a lifetime ban from the sport of thoroughbred racing. The jockey, David Walker, is accused of corruption, after authorities say he bet on a rival’s horse in an Aug. 16 race at the Awapuni course. They say he then restrained his own mount in order to win a wager. According to The Race Integrity Unit (RIU), Walker placed a bet on “St Rasom,” a horse which finished the race several lengths before the horse Walker was riding – “Watch Your Man.”

Horse betting

Stewarts had questioned Walker after he exhibited suspicious behavior on the course, taking wide turns and failing to spur his horse on; however, after veterinarians examined the horse and found nothing wrong, the stewards stopped their inquiry into the incident. Now, Walker faces more serious scrutiny.

Mike Godber, general manager of the RIU said that Walker’s alleged actions threatened the “very fabric” of horse racing. He said that if Walker were to continue racing, he might damage the sport’s integrity, image and interests.

Walker has defended himself against the RIU’s accusations, saying that a hand cramp led to him to restrain his horse; however CCTV cameras captured footage of the jockey collecting winnings from the bet he had placed on the other horse. His winnings allegedly totaled more than NZ $500. Authorities are now investigating other races Walker has participated in for possible corruption.

Observers are calling the incident one of the biggest scandals in the New Zealand racing scene and Walker has already faced personal consequences for his alleged actions. He lost a ride on the horse “Scapolo,” a favourite in Hastings Triple Crown.