Golden Slipper winning jockey Ben Melham is free to ride at the rich Caulfield Guineas Race Day on Saturday after getting a reduction to his careless riding suspension.

Ben Melham, above, is free to ride at the Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas Race Day at Caulfield. Photo by Adrienne Bicknell.

Ben Melham, above, is free to ride at the Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas Race Day at Caulfield. Photo by Adrienne Bicknell.

Melham appealed to the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board on Monday and had his nine meeting suspension reduced to seven and will now take his mounts at Caulfield on Saturday.

“Great result at RAD board today. Which has me free to ride at Caulfield Guineas meeting Saturday,” Melham wrote on twitter.

Racing Victoria stewards had found Melham guilty of causing interference at the 1000m mark in the second race at Ballarat last Thursday in that he allowed his mount Keysor to shift in which resulted in It’s a Date being checked.

Melham was in danger of missing the Caulfield Guineas Race Day with his original sentence set down to expire at midnight on October 15, a day after the rich race day.

Melham was in the spotlight during the 2017 Sydney Autumn Carnival when he rode She Will Reign to victory in the Group 1 $3.5m Longines Golden Slipper (1200m) at Rosehill but because of weight restrictions was unable to partner the Gary Portelli trained filly in her win in the Group 1 $500,000 Charter Keck Cramer Moir Stakes (1000m) at The Valley on September 29.

Melham would also have been first choice rider for She Will Reign in the $10m The Everest (1200m) at Randwick on Caulfield Guineas Day but was unable to make the 51kg that the filly would have to carry.

Saturday’s race meeting at Caulfield is one of the biggest days during the 2017 Melbourne Spring Carnival, boasting four Group 1 races, and as well as the Group 1 $2m Ladbrokes Caulfield Guineas (1600m) for the three year olds, the three year old fillies will contest the Group 1 $500,000 Schweppes Thousand Guineas (1600m), the open handicappers will step out in the Group 1 $500,000 Toorak Handicap (1600m) and the weight for age stars will face off in the Group 1 $1m Ladbrokes Caulfield Stakes (2000m).

About The Author

Mark Mazzaglia

Mark is a passionate journalist with a life-time involvement in the racing industry. He spent many years as an analyst and form expert at the Courier Mail and also has hands-on experience working with some of Queensland’s top trainers.

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