Stewards Confusion At Chester Sees Placings Wrongly Amended

Stewards Confusion At Chester Sees Placings Wrongly Amended

The British Horseracing Authority has sincerely apologised to all punters betting at Chester on course or away from the venue on Friday night, after on-track officials mixed up the placings of the 6.55 contest.

The mile-and-a-half handicap won by Martyn Meade's Infrastructure looked a scruffy finish on first viewing, with a sequence of interference caused from the next finishers.

The stewards deemed soon after the race that Ed Dunlop's Dark Red, who was second past the winning post, had hampered John Mackie's Lunar Jet, who actually dead-heated for third with Mark Johnston's Vivid Diamond.

They ended up promoting Lunar Jet to second, whilst demoting Dark Red to third and placing Vivid Diamond unfairly back in fourth.

The rule book states that dead-heated horses cannot be split, unless there has been interference between themselves.

Lunar Jet and Vivid Diamond should have been treated as a single item, so had the rules been treated properly, Dark Red would have been demoted behind both horses and placed in fourth.

After investigating the result over the weekend, the sport's governing body properly revised the result to the horse's correct placings, but the outcome expectedly made no difference to winning and losing bet-slips from the course, online and in shops.

Luna Jet and Vivid Diamond were eventually correctly placed as a dead-heated second, with Dark Red rightly dropped to fourth and outside the podium finish.

A BHA statement on Monday read: "The BHA understands the impact this will have had on a limited number of bets and that some disruption may have been caused to both off and on-course operators and their customers, and apologises for this. 

"It will now consider what steps to take in the future to minimise the risk of such an incident reoccurring, which may include publishing specific guidance relating to interference involving horses who have dead-heated." 

The meeting on Friday did provide plenty of positive stories, including a four-time for Richard Fahey - three in the colours of Dr Marwan Koukash.

Paul Hanagan rode a hat-trick in the space of an hour - two for Fahey, adding to the winner he had up at York earlier in the day on Ed Walker's Royal Intervention.