Leading Brisbane jockey Damian Browne is free to ride Buffering in the 2014 T.J. Smith Stakes after his six week suspension was thrown out by the Racing Disciplinary Board this afternoon.
Browne was given a six week suspension by Racing Queensland officials for failing to give Kingtantes every possible chance in the Quest Breakfast Creek Maiden (1200m) at Eagle Farm on February 26; with stewards ruling that the Group 1 winning hoop failed to take a run at the 400 metre mark and did not ride the Easy Rocking gelding with enough vigor from the 300 metre mark.
The Racing Disciplinary Board agreed with the notion that Browne had used poor judgment in not taking the run at the 400 metre mark, but ruled that they error was not worthy of Browne receiving a charge under Australian Rule 135 (b) and a six week suspension.
“The charge is not designed to catch a jockey who makes an error but is designed to punish a jockey who makes an error for which he can be held culpable,” Racing Disciplinary Board Chairman Bill Carter told AAP after the appeal.
The ruling leaves Browne free to ride during the 2014 Sydney Autumn Racing Carnival; with the veteran jockey set to partner Buffering and Fire Up Fifi for the Heathcote stable, while he is also a chance of picking up rides for the Darley operation.
Browne has ridden for Darley on a number of occasions and was able to steer Earthquake to success in the Group 1 Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m) at Caulfield on February 22, while regular stable jockey Kerrin McEvoy was kept out of the saddle due to a knee injury.
Buffering failed to fire in the Group 2 Challenge Stakes (1000m) at Royal Randwick on Saturday, but remains on track to chase a fourth Group 1 win in the T.J. Smith Stakes (1200m) after Browne piloted the popular sprinter to victory in the Manikato Stakes (1200m), VRC Sprint Classic (1200m) and Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival.
Browne will have the opportunity to add another Group 1 victory to his racing resume when he partners Fire Up Fifi in the Coolmore Classic (1500m) at Rosehill Gardens this weekend.
Fire Up Fifi was competitive at Group 1 level during the 2013 Spring Racing Carnival, finishing third in both the Myer Classic (1600m) and Railway Stakes (1600m), but will need to improve on her fifth place finish in the Group 3 Wiggle Stakes (1400m) to be a winning chance in the Coolmore Classic.