Nash Rawiller is in line to snatch up the plumb Autumn Carnival ride on Buffering if Damian Browne is unsuccessful in his appeal against a six week suspension handed down by Racing Queensland stewards yesterday.
Stewards found Browne guilty of not taking a run at the 300m on the Robert Heathcote trained Kingtantes in the three year old Maiden at Eagle Farm on February 26.
Kingtantes, a $9 chance, eventually finished third to Primal Flight with stewards claiming Browne’s failure to secure that run and lack of vigour between the 300m and the 200m cost the Easy Rocking three year old second position.
If Browne fails in his appeal against the charge, he will miss all the Autumn Carnival rides on multiple Group 1 winner Buffering which includes the Group 1 $2.5m Darley T J Smith Stakes (1200m) at Randwick on April 12.
Browne, who was successful on the Peter Snowden trained Earthquake in the Group 1 $1m Sportingbet Blue Diamond Stakes(1200m) at Caulfield on February 22 and is in line for more rides from Darley, was shell shocked that he could be found guilty of this change after a twenty-six year unblemished record.
“I’m shell-shocked,’’ Browne told The Courier-Mail.
“In 26 years of riding this is the first time I’ve been in a situation like this.”
Browne will be able to ride Fire Up Fifi for Heathcote in the Group 3 $150,000 Wiggle Stakes (1400m) at Warwick Farm on Saturday before his suspension is scheduled to start at midnight on Sunday and end on April 20.
Browne and Buffering were set to reunite in the Group 2 $400,000 Challenge Stakes (1000m) at Randwick on March 15 after the pair collected three Group 1 victories over the Spring and Summer Carnivals.
Buffering broke a frustrating run of minor Group 1 placings with a win in the Group 1 $1m Sportingbet Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on October 25 and backed that up with a win in the Group 1 $1m VRC Sprint Classic (1200m) at Flemington on the final day of the Melbourne Cup Carnival.
Heathcote then took Buffering to Perth where the six year old scored a nose win over Moment Of Change in the Group 1 $500,000 Crown Perth – Winterbottom Stakes (1200m) at Ascot in Perth on November 23 during the Perth Summer Carnival.
Rawiller is no stranger to the top line sprinter and from two rides was able to win the 2010 Group 2 $175,000 Roman Consul Stakes (1200m) at Randwick and ran second to Black Caviar in the 2011 Group 1 $1m Patinack Farm Classic (1200m) at Flemington.
Buffering is currently on the third line of betting in the T J Smith Stakes with Ladbrokes.com.au at $6.50 behind multi-million dollar colt Zoustar at $3.40 and Team Hawkes trained Not Listenin’tome at $4.80.