Craig Williams and Nash Rawiller could miss Melbourne Cup

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Craig Williams

Jockey Craig Williams could miss the Melbourne Cup due to suspension

The Victoria Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board will decide whether Criag Williams and Nash Rawiller will ride in Tuesday’s $6m Group 1 Melbourne Cup(3200m).

The duo were handed out significant suspension at Bendigo today, Williams a 10-meeting suspension and Rawiller eight meetings.

Williams is down to ride Melbourne Cup second favourite Dunaden, the French stayer he rode to victory in the Geelong Cup.

By winning he would become the first jockey in history to win the Caulfeild Cup, Cox Plate and Melbourne Cup in the same year.

Rawiller is booked for former US stayer Unusual Suspect – both men will fight their penalty.

Both jockeys have until Saturday to lodge an appeal with the appeals likely to be heard on Monday.

Williams was suspended for his ride on The Red Emperor in the restricted handicap (2200m).

He pleaded not guilty and vigorously defended himself, calling on Rawiller for support.

“Nash didn’t blame my horse. I made a slow manoeuvre out and his horse clearly over-reacted, locked its jaw and ran out,” he said.

“Nash said he blamed his horse, not Craig Williams.”

Rawiller was charged with careless riding on Star Bender in the Maiden Plate (1100m).

“I find it incomprehensible to think that a green horse in a maiden can cost me a Melbourne Cup ride,” Rawilller said.

“This week is what we come to work for.

“I’ve got a very good chance of winning the Melbourne Cup.

“There is nothing more heartbreaking than having this leading into it and maybe miss it.

“I’ll go through the right avenues and vigorously defend my innocence.”

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