Whip-happy Bowman gets stick

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Whip-happy Bowman gets stick

Melbourne Cup 2018 finish

Melbourne – Australian Jockey Hugh Bowman will miss a month of racing after being hit with a whopping 35-meeting suspension following his ride on runner-up Marmelo in the Lexus Melbourne Cup on Tuesday.

Bowman – the regular rider of super mare Winx – was cited on three separate charges in the A$7.3-million race: an incident of careless riding 450m from home, excessive whip use prior to the final 200m and the fact that he weighed in more than half a kilogram over his prescribed weight of 55kg.

Marmelo looked the winner when he hit the front entering the final 200m but was run down late by Cross Counter, who eventually won cosily by a length.

Stewards found Bowan guilty on all three charges and issued separate suspensions of 12 meetings for careless riding, eight meetings for whip use and 21 meetings for the weight infringement.

The respective bans totalled 41 meetings, however the stewards, at their discretion, ordered the ban to stand at 35 meetings.

The four-time Cox Plate-winning rider will miss the prized mounts of Latrobe in the Mackinnon Stakes and last-start Manikato Stakes winner Brave Smash in the Darley Classic on Saturday.

The ban will also see him sidelined for Group 1 meetings in Hong Kong and Japan, also ruling out a defence of his Japan Cup scalp of 2017.

Bowman, who didn’t rule out an appeal against the severity of the suspension, will be free to return for the prized Hong Kong International meeting in mid-December.

Five other jockeys, including winning pilot Kerrin McEvoy and Michael Walker on A Prince Of Arran, who finished third, were fined for breaching the whip rule in the Melbourne Cup.

McEvoy was fined A$3,000 after using the whip nine times in the final 400m – four more than permitted under the rules – on Cross Counter. – www.racingpost.com

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