IN THE NEWS: Phaze Action falls in Brierly Steeplechase at Warrnambool, jumps racing mired in controversy again


IN THE NEWS: On MAY 2, 2012

Jumps racing is mired in controversy again after a horror fall at Warrnambool on Tuesday.

Phaze Action, a runner in the Brierly Steeplechase at the Victorian track, crashed through a barrier at the third-last fence and threw his rider.

Jockey Paul Hamblin will appeal against a careless riding suspension after stewards found him guilty of being responsible for the fall of his mount Phaze Action in the Brierly Steeplechase at Warrnambool.

Racing Victoria stewards, chaired by Terry Bailey, found that Hamblin rode Phaze Action in the approach to the third-last fence, where there was insufficient room for both his mount and Sea Town.

Phaze Action, the $4.60 equal second favourite, crashed through the inside wing.

The Matthew Hyland-trained eight-year-old, a previous-start Sandown Steeple winner with Hamblin aboard, was not injured in the incident.

He was the only runner to fail to complete the course.

Phaze Action was found to have bled through both nostrils, but stewards determined it was caused by the fall.

This enabled the gelding to avoid a regulation three-month ban.

Hamblin, who hasn't been suspended for two years, asked for a fine rather than a suspension.

But stewards ousted Hamblin, who doesn't have any other rides at the Warrnambool carnival, from midnight on Tuesday until after the maiden hurdle at Ballarat on May 10.

Hamblin, who indicated he would appeal, said that Phaze Action "chickened out" of jumping the fence.

"There was room there, but it was a sidestep that he decided to do," he said.

Hamblin told stewards that he believed there was enough room but Phaze Action was inexperienced.

"He's not an easy horse to ride," he said.

"I thought there was room.

"On any other horse, I would have had room."

The stewards dismissed photographs of the incident supplied by a freelance photographer, which Hamblin believed would support his case.

Fareer won the race, ridden by Irish jockey Tom Ryan for trainer Robert Smerdon.

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