Tag: rider

EXCLUSIVE – The Great Rock and Roll Racing Queensland Rider Ripoff – The $20 Million Elephant in the RQ Room – Why Don’t They Tell You This in the Mainstream Media? – And More Importantly, When are Our Jocks Going to Get Paid?

 

 

arqaa

Racing Queensland owes the jockeys of the State of Queensland tens of millions of dollars in unpaid employer superannuation contributions.

Roughly $20 million to be precise.

The last of the series of legal battles that Queensland;s Principal Racing Authority fought to try to avoid their legal obligations to the people who make racing tick ended on the 3rd of July 2020, when the High Court of Australia refused RQ leave to appeal and threw its application into the gutter on its head, with costs.

I will explain the case in more detail later on –  it’s a comedy of poor legal advice and errors – but first things first, lets get the money paid and sorted.

To get a basic picture of the pickle that Racing Queensland has placed itself firmly in, we will use some very rough but fact based maths to calculate an approximate guesstimation of the size of the due and payable debt.

There are about 11 000 races run in QLD each year, and the jockeys fee on average during the period of the non-payments is $200 a head.

That’s $2.2 million.

For the sake of ease we will call the super contribution 10 percent because its a simple number to use for the maths, and only about half a percent overs at worst.

So that’s $220 000 a year in super on the riding fees alone.

Roughly $100 million a year is paid in thoroughbred racing prizemoney.

The jockeys are entitled to 5% of it, which works out at about $5 million.

Ten percent of $5 million for the super is $500 000.

500k plus 220k = $720 000 a year.

That’s how much Racing Queensland have ripped off from the jocks each year by not paying the super contributions on their earnings that they should have been paying.

Of course on top of that there is also the super on barrier trial and trackwork riding fees, but I don’t have those numbers at hand to work out the sums. Let’s call it 60 grand, and with swings and roundabouts round the back pay bill up to $800 000 a year.

It is not quite known at the moment what the exact period of non-payment of the super has been.

The court cases have been fought over a near million dollar unpaid assessment the ATO made on a selection of jockeys between 2009 and 2019, but that was a just a test case to establish that Racing Queensland did in fact owe the money, which the superior courts have found they do.

Working off the court judgements, it is reasonable to identify the actual period of the RQ rort beginning in 2020, and running all the way up until now. That’s 20 years.

20 years x $800 000 a year = $16 million.

And we have even started calculating the compound interest that would have been earned if the super had been paid. It is going to add up to many, many millions of dollars.

The long and short of it is that Racing Queensland owe riders in this State $20 million – or more correctly, it owes the Australian Taxation Office more than $20 million which when received will be distributed to the jockeys superannuation accounts – and this money must be paid.

No ifs, no buts, the last avenue of appeal has been exhausted and RQ’s ridiculous claims thrown out of court with more than a million dollars in costs awarded in favour of the taxman.

So how are they going to pay?

And when?

Every jockey in the State and their managers and masters should be asking these questions right now.

This is your money, and you have been robbed. Wilfully and deliberately robbed, in breach of the law.

If you stole twenty bucks out of Racing Queensland’s till, they’d have you charged by the police and thrown out of racing, so why should you allow RQ to pick your pocket and not be screaming about it?

Just have a think about what happened to the Gill family, and others. The Gills not only lost the light of their lives when Desiree went down in a race fall at the end of 2013, they lost one of their bread winners too.

Her super, like everyone else’s, hadn’t been paid by Racing Queensland. If it had it would have passed on through her estate to the family, and their life as they worked their way through the darkness would have been so much easier with the buffer of that money, but instead they got nothing in the way of this super and struggled.

It’s not proper and its not right. In fact its cruel. They and the families of other brave riders that we have lost should be the very first ones repaid what their loved one was owed, and that deserve a huge apology too. Everyone in racing does, but none has been forthcoming, and neither has any money.

It’s time this was fixed.

The court says Racing Queensland must pay, so pay they must, right now without any further delay, and if it hurts the budget, well so be it.

The millions of dollars spent fighting futile cases through the courts in a hopeless attempt to justify and defend their rorts did too.

There is no racing without riders.

It’s about time the little people got put first.

Let’s do it!

arqa

 

Ty Wheels into Town and Goes Boom! Boom! Boom!

Ty Wheeler

This young bloke’s name is Ty Wheeler.

He’s 21 years old and he’s just made his debut this month as a professional jockey.

What a debut it’s been too.

Young Ty lived the dream by riding a winner in his first ever race last Saturday week, a maiden at Chinchilla aboard a young filly named Stryking Princess. If he keeps this up he will have plenty of them. Being the good looking young rooster that he is, he probably already does.

The kid had one more ride that day out in coal seam gas land, for a no good, but then on Saturday afternoon he trotted out at Esk and – keeping the young Romeo theme going – went Boom! Boom! Boom! Literally.

Wahoo Girl.

Roots n’ Rocks.

Divine Miss Boom.

Winner, winner, winner.

Grinner.

Congratulations to the young man. What a brilliant effort, and what a great way to kick off your career. And would you believe it, with 4 wins from 6 rides at a strike rate of 67% he’s now got the best hit rate of any jockey in Queensland.

Long may he ride, and may the winners keep on flowing.

The Greatest Scandal in NSW Racing This Century is About to Explode – And What You Learn Over the Coming Weeks and Months Will Shock You to the Core – Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow – An Archie Butterfly Exclusive

And so it begins.

Does anyone remember the series of stories I published last year on the subscription site archiebutterfly.com about the Sally Snow affair?

For those who don’t, or who didn’t read it, I wrote that the reasons for the sacking of Sally Snow from her role as the senior odds-setter for the TAB were far, far more deeper and more serious than most people realised, and that when the lid was lifted off the scandal the repercussions would resonate wide and far across racing in NSW, and – to a slightly lesser extent – Victoria, and perhaps even Queensland.

In the series of articles I suggested that some very well-known names in racing – some of the biggest – would be embroiled in the scandal, and that they would include Group 1 winning jockeys, nationally known trainers, and at least one infamous bookmaker whose name was known across the land.

None of this was supposition. I don’t make up fairy tales, I don’t have the imagination, and in racing you don’t need to, for the truths in the game we love are always much, much stranger than fiction.

Coronavirus delayed the long running, and even more long ranging, cross border investigation into matters related to Sally Snow’s dismissal by Tabcorp after the NSW Stewards warned her off racecourses for refusing to produce and hand over her private mobile phones (yes, phones).

There were very good personal reasons for Sally Snow’s decision not to hand over the devices, even though she knew full well that it would mean the end of her career as a corporate bookmaking behemoth’s front woman. These reason’s weren’t related to her individual privacy, but rather to an intense desire not to holiday in Long Bay.

Racing NSW probe link between Sally Snow and Unibet bookmaker

Sadly for Sally (above) though, the investigators already had them. Not the physical phones, but the mirrors, and all the contacts contained on them, and all the texts, calls and mistakenly believed to be encrypted messages made to and from them. The joint police task force had been all over her and her friends for more than 12 months, even though neither she nor they knew it. The cops only asked the Stewards to use their powers to request the phones to make a good thing of it, and to test her hand.

They got the result they expected, and all it was cost Snow her job and her reputation, and confirm to the investigators that their conclusions were 100 percent correct and firming.

A month or two later Sally Snow’s husband Nathan was stopped at customs and detained by border control officers when returning an overseas trip. Nathan Snow’s phones and devices were seized, including those that it is believed were registered in another person’s name.

Around the same time the NSW Stewards demanded that prominent and oft controversial racing identity Steve Fletcher hand his private telephones over to them.

Fletcher complied with the direction, but almost immediately – for reasons that will become abundantly clear over the coming months – lodged an application to the Supreme Court of NSW seeking to restrain the Stewards from accessing or using any information on the phones other than that related directly to the Sally Snow inquiry.

His court application also sought a direction that Stewards provide him with the specific details of the inquiry, and the details of which aspects of it they wished to access limited information from his phone for.

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The NSW Stewards didn’t fall for that trick.

They fought the case.

In April last year Fletcher won.

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The Supreme Court ordered that only specific information contained on Fletcher’s phone could be accessed by the racing officials, and then only in circumstances whereby Fletcher was advised why.

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The Stewards immediately lodged an appeal of the decision with the NSW Supreme Court of Appeal.

In February of this year the Court of Appeal handed down its decision.

This time the Stewards won.

By unanimous decision of the three appeal judges, the Racing NSW Stewards were now permitted to access all of the information on Fletcher’s phones, without telling him why.

fletch1234

The die was cast, and the wave of summonses to appear before the Stewards on rule breach charges, and the consequent and/or concurrent flood of police arrests were about to commence.

Then the coronavirus hit, and everything went into abeyance.

But none of it went away.

Last week the COVID-19 restrictions were lifted.

Today jockey Adam Hyeronimus has been charged with multiple betting offences.

Look closely at the rule breach charges that the rider has been hit with.

Hyeronimus has not charged with placing bets himself, but rather with having beneficial interests in bets placed on his behalf.

You can take one guess as to who placed the bets on the jockeys beneficial behalf, and why.

This is Steve Fletcher (below).

His picture is only published in this story because he’s handsome.

Supreme Court grants Racing NSW right to inspect phone of pro ...

The person who (allegedly) placed the bets is not the principal of the large scale race-fixing and price manipulation operation that is soon to become a front page headline across the country, and unleash a storm that will reverberate across the racing land.

Here is a tip, and it’s a very strong one indeed.

To find a clue as to who the soon to be named alleged principal of what the Stewards will allege to be a highly crook, race hook cartel may be, one would be well advised to take a close look at the trainer or training partnership that Adam Hyeronimus has been most closely associated with throughout his career.

And then ask yourself who that trainer, or member of the training partnership, may share a bed with.

It’s not the trainer that I am suggesting will be alleged to be involved.

He, is not a she.

Here is another tip.

See the extract from the February 2020 Supreme Court of Appeal judgement that is published above?

To save you looking, I will print it again.

fletch1234

There is a highly skilled sand very experienced young racing Steward whose rapid rise to the top of his profession hit a huge speed bump when the ABC aired the infamous Four Corners report into live baiting in the greyhound industry.

That Steward’s employment was terminated by Racing Queensland in the wake of the scandal, even though it had nothing to do with him at all, and he knew nothing about the cruelty.

Sometime later, after returning from an ostensibly unsuccessful stint in a overseas racing jurisdiction, that Steward returned to Australia, and the widespread impression was that he was finished in the world of racing integrity, and unemployable in the industry.

Ever heard the adage about judging books by their covers? Or watched a boxing match and seen a fighter fall for a sucker punch?

The believed to be unemployable Steward got a job.

As a runner placing TAB bets for Steve Fletcher.

He wasn’t much good at it, but he never intended to be.

Enron alert to Steve Fletcher – there is always a smarter man in every room.

He’s usually the one pretending to be dumb.

After leaving Fletcher’s employment, the unemployable racing Steward returned to the racing industry as a Steward.

Not just any Steward either.

Wade Birch became the Deputy Chief Steward of NSW Racing.

For those who have been asking how and why, your mystery is now solved.

Birch sprints to top job | Sunshine Coast Daily

And if you believed me when I was publicly asking how and why, then you are as silly as Steve Fletcher.

Sorry for misleading you, but once I worked out what was going on, long before anyone else who wasn’t part of the covert operations did, I made a professional and ethical decision to run dead and play dumb, even though it meant writing things that I knew not to be true.

It worked too.

The man who will be named as the alleged principal contacted me out of the blue. I’d never spoken to or met him before.

He invited me to lunch, but I politely declined, telling him that I was in Northern NSW at the time on an assignment seeking to locate and interview people who had gone to the school with the demon who committed the Christchurch massacres, which was true.

The man then arranged for me to brunch with his representative in Byron Bay, a former young tyro bookie at the Gold Coast, who I knew – without the man knowing I knew – now worked as a TAB runner for Steve Fletcher.

I met the former bookie, and played dumb to him, and crazy too. In fact I dropped a pill and smoked two joints on the way to meet the bookie, just to make a good thing of it. It didn’t effect me – I was a street kid after I got raped; I learned early how to handle my drugs – but it fooled him, so much so that, deciding that I knew nothing and was merely a hit and miss merchant, he even tried to leave me with the bill.

Good luck on that one.

He had none, but now I knew for sure that what I’d worked out was 100% right.

I’m a straight, clean racing man.

I always have been, and I always will be.

I don’t talk to police, ever, so they’re safe in that respect, but I know the story and I’m not afraid to write it, and within the confines of the law I will.

Hyeronimus has been in career-best form this year.

Here is one last tip for now.

There is a leading NSW jockey who bears a striking resemblance to Adam Hyeronimus (above).

Or did until last week, when that rider died his hair peroxide blonde.

Many in the media are viewing the hair colour change as a fashion mistake, and making the jockey’s altered appearance a matter of merriment and mirth.

To those innocents I say this.

It is now what you don’t know that defines you skill as an investigative journalist, it is what you do. And sometimes witnesses find it difficult to identify a person when their appearance has drastically changed.

Fukuoka, Japan. 4th Aug, 2018. Brenton Avdulla Horse Racing ...

The war is about to begin, and there will be many casualties along the way.

The snow will be stained red with racing blood.

Put on your helmets, buckle in, and watch this space.

And remember, you heard it all here first.

You always do.

Editor’s note – The licenced racing industry participant charged alongside Adam Hyeronimus is a young man named Blake Paine. He works for the same stable as the one I have identified in this story. So does his father Neil Paine, the man in the funny suit who breached the COVID-19 restrictions by racing across the Randwick mounting yard to hug Adrian Bott after Farnan won this year’s Slipper. Neil Paine – who is not alleged to have any knowledge of matters related to this story or the charges laid against his son – got off with a slap on the wrist with a wet bus ticket for his serious contravention of the NSW Government health directives and the Racing NSW coronavirus protocols. The Stewards had far bigger fish to fry.

 

 

 

Fairies at the Bottom of the Garden – Race 7 at Beaudesert on Sunday – Part 1 – Ouch!

fella

I personally thought the short distance that Fair Fella galloped after dumping Jason Taylor was well and truly long enough, and well and truly cause to scratch it from Race 7 at Beaudesert.

I also know that nine of ten footy players who get pulled off the field because they are concussed and in Disneyland claim that they are okay to play on, and that if Jason Taylor was stood down from injury in that race he would have lost around a thousand dollar in riding fees and prize purse commissions.

I’m not a vet, so while I can question Dr Gemma Silvetri’s decision to allow Fair Fella to run, I can’t with any authority criticise it.

I can say however that proofs are often found in puddings, and tell you that in an 1100 metre scamper around a tight front-runners track, the 13-4 shot that had won its past 3 starts by an average of three lengths led early but was gone at the 600, and that it dropped out to finish seven and a half lengths behind the winner.

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I can’t speak as a vet, and I can’t speak as jockey Jason Taylor either, because I wasn’t the bloke who got hurled off Fair Fella and hit the deck hard, he was.

I can however speak as a footy player who has been concussed, for  back in my junior days I was handed a ticket to Dreamworld a few times. It tends to happen to little, skinny fullbacks who tackle front-rowers who’ve broken through on the burst ball and all, chest high, and hang on like grim death if they can’t trip them, just to make sure the fat, tall bastards can’t put the Sonny Bill down touching the turf.

Let me tell you, it f*cking hurts your head when a kid twice your age who has hair on his nuts at 13 body slams the back of your skull into the turf at full speed, and assure you that the ticket holder tends not to think too clearly for quite a while either, like until at least around lunchtime Monday.

I can also tell you through personal research, and by quoting all and any expert scientific research findings, that people with concussion are the least most qualified in the world to diagnose their own conditions, and make an assessment of their current concussed capacity.

So asking a jockey who has just suffered a trauma that may cause concussion whether he’s right to ride is like asking a bloke in a coma whether he’d like one or two sugars with his tea, or whether he’d like to drink it while he signed a resuscitate or do not resuscitate health directive.

In other words, it is both blindingly stupid, and irresponsibly negligent.

So why did the Stewards allow Jason Taylor to self-assess his condition after Fair Fella threw him behind the gates?

I’m not for a minute saying Taylor was concussed, just that he could have been, and that fact triggers certain duties of care and responsibilities upon the racing officials responsible for running the meeting and the organisations they represent, those outfits being Racing Queensland and the QRIC.

It was good enough to have the horse inspected by a vet.

Why wasn’t it good enough to have the jockey inspected by the on-course doctor?

Head injuries are becoming a huge issue in sport these days, and when they full-flow the damages bills are going to start running in the hundreds of millions.

The folk who run racing in Queensland need to wake up to themselves and their responsibility to people as well as horses, before the lawsuits start drowning them too.

fellas

 

White Lines Always Eventually Lead You Down a Hill

wingsds

The international racing industry is in shock today after the territory’s number five jockey, 29-year-old South African superstar Grant Van Niekerk, had his license to ride stripped away by the Hong Kong Jockey Club, effective immediately.

The HKJC don’t give reasons for approving, refusing or withdrawing jockey permits, but the strong mail from our sources on the island suggest that drugs – to wit, cocaine – are involved front, right and centre, and that GVK may not be the last rider to be involuntarily saying sayonara to riding in the world’s richest jurisdiction.

If our mail is correct then Van Niekerk’s a bloody idiot, because the bloke still in his twenties has earned about $750 000 Australian so far this season in one of the few nations still left racing in this COVID-19 ravaged world, and was bound to just about double that given that’s its only half-time in the season.

What’s he got left now?

Nothing.

Racing back home in South Africa is gone, so is nearby Mauritius. He won’t get a license here or in Singapore, and would have been a million to one but is off anyway so it doesn’t matter. UK is cactus, NZ’s closed for business, President Duterte will shoot you personally if you hop on a horse in the Phillipines, and even the Kiwanis Charity Cup in Port Vila’s off.

There are no insurance or rider welfare payments for foreign nationals who’ve done the wrong thing either. Van Niekerk is rooted.

And all for the sake of a little white line.

I don’t know what to say.

So I will say nothing, other than this.

You poor, silly bugger.

There’s a bed and a feed here at Kuranda if you need it.

Bring the whip with you.

Maggie’s been naughty, and need a bit of correction.

Don’t we all?

Racing Queensland Embarrasses the Industry on Live Vision Streamed Across the World – How Hard Can it Really be to Count to Ten?

jocvkss

There are 13 jockeys nominated to ride in the corralled Down/Eastern Downs and SEQ Coast Regions (3&4) carved out under Racing Queensland’s save racing from COVID-19 strategy.

One of them – Alannah Badger – is inactive, having not ridden since October 2018.

Another – Robert Fraehr – copped a suspension at Kilcoy two weeks ago and is out on the sidelines until the 13th of April.

A third – Cheryl Rogers – is a trainer who holds a dual license. She has not ridden since before Christmas.

The 13 available jockeys thus becomes 10, and no extras can be shipped in.

Obviously the largest sized field in any event on the six-race card that can be scheduled is ten, because there are only 10 jockeys.

So what does Racing Queensland do?

Puts on one race with 11 accepted starters, and two races with 12.

Of course five horses had to be late scratched, for there was no-one to ride them, although the report shows just four, because one of the riderless runners was by chance scratched on veterinary grounds, or at least that’s what we are told.

jocvks

All this gross incompetence and sheer embarrassment on a TAB card too, televised live to punters around the nation, and across the globe.

There were only two race meetings held in the entire state, yet still Racing Queensland couldn’t get it right.

How hard can it really be to count to ten?

In Queensland?

All too hard.

 

 

 

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A Whole Lot of Baloney About a Bloke Who’s Name Isn’t Even Moloney

malones

It seems that I write a story almost every second week about Ryan Maloney being replaced on a mount because he’s overweight, and I have to admit it becomes frustrating.

When are the Queensland Stewards going to get serious and dish Maloney out a suspension for his repeated infractions of the rules, like they have recently to fellow jockeys like Les Tilley?

Probably when they learn to spell his name I guess.

 

Unknown Jockey Tobe Advised Rides a Winner on Debut at the Sunshine Coast, Where it Was Raining

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This is the official Stewards Report from the Sunshine Coast on Sunday.

It’s published a couple of hours after the last race.

I guess it needs a bit of revision.

I can give the Stewards a hand.

Devlann was to be ridden by Brad Stewart, but he hurt his foot during the running of the fourth race (6 races back, just in case the calculator’s on the blink), and got stood down for the day by the club Doc.

Matthew McGillivray was the replacement jockey.

He did a good job too, because he and his new mate Devlann won the race.

The QRIC Stewards finished tailed off last.

I’ll pop you the bill in the post Commissioner.