Jockey - Brennan
Paddy Brennan receives 18-day ban and Fergal O’Brien fined £4,000 for horse schooling at Wincanton.

Paddy Brennan receives 18-day ban and Fergal O’Brien fined £4,000 for horse schooling at Wincanton.

The Wincanton stewards found that jockey Brennan failed to ride Northern Air in a way that showed “timely, real and substantial effort” to secure the best possible placement. Northern Air, purchased for £105,000 in December by O’Brien and Brennan, had won a mares’ maiden at Dromahane the previous month.

Brennan rode the five-year-old to a sixth-place finish in a Newbury bumper last month, and this race marked her hurdling debut in the colors of former football manager Harry Redknapp. An inquiry was conducted into what the stewards perceived as tender handling by Brennan, with O’Brien interviewed by phone as he was not present at Wincanton.

As a result of the findings, Northern Air was suspended from racing for 40 days. According to Brennan, Northern Air made a respiratory noise as she began to make up ground turning into the home straight.

He emphasized that his intention was to hold her up, as she had raced keenly at Newbury and did not finish her race strongly. The stewards, however, believed that up the entirety of the straight, Brennan did not exert enough effort on the mare, who was seen passing horses and finishing strongly just over three lengths from the winning position.

This led them to conclude that the tender handling was not justified. Brennan’s suspension will commence on April 22, causing him to miss Sandown’s season finale but enabling him to ride Dysart Enos in the Trustatrader Top Novices’ Hurdle at Aintree’s Grand National meeting.

Evetts, a representative, added that the severity of Brennan’s suspension was due to the perceived tender handling of the mare. As a result of the findings, a mandatory 40-day suspension was imposed on the horse.

The range for the jockey is ten to 18 days, with a 14-day entry. As the mare finished strongly in second place, it was decided to impose the maximum suspension of 18 days on Brennan.

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