Melbourne’s premier jockey Damien Oliver will have to win an appeal against a careless riding suspension if he is to ride at Flemington on Australian Guineas Day.
Oliver was suspended for twelve meetings for causing interference at the 500m mark when he rode the Mick Price trained three year old Cornrow to victory in a 1200m Maiden at Ballart on Thursday.
The leading jockey is free to ride on Blue Diamond Stakes Day at Caulfield on Saturday with his suspension beginning at midnight that day and will expire at midnight on March 11, 2015.
Oliver’s appeal against the decision and the severity of his penalty is set down for Monday with the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary (RAD) Board and the champion jockey is hoping for a favourable result so he will be free to ride on Australian Guineas Day on March 7.
Three year old Wandjina was to be Oliver’s mount in the Group 1 $500,000 Australian Guineas (1600m) and the Gai Waterhouse trained colt stamped himself as a genuine chance after leading all of the way to win the Group 3 $150,000 CS Hayes Stakes (1400m) at Flemington on February 21.
Oliver was impressed with Wandjina’s C S Hayes Stakes win but added that he didn’t expect to be left in front to dictate the pace.
“I didn’t really expect to be in front, but San Nicasio never really showed the speed that he did the other day and I was pretty comfortable there doing it,” Oliver said.
“I just felt that we were going pretty leisurely for two thirds of the race and he had a good kick for me.”
Wandjina is on the second line of betting at $7 with Disposition for the Australian Guineas with Ladbrokes.com.au with the Chris Waller trained Kermadec heading the market order at $4.
Oliver has seven rides at Caulfield on Saturday including $13 chance Stoker in the Group 1 $1m Blue Diamond Stakes (1200m).
The Tony McEvoy trained Stoker heads to the Blue Diamond Stakes on the back of a win in the $250,000 2yo Inglis Premier (1000m) at Sandown on February 7 with Oliver aboard.
McEvoy will also leg Oliver up on Caulfield Autumn Classic favourite Alpine Eagle and Big Memory in the Listed $120,000 Mornington Cup Prelude (2000m).
Oliver will also be back aboard Happy Trails in the Group 2 $200,000 Crown Golden Ale Peter Young Stakes (1800m), Armada in the Group 3 $150,000 Zedative Stakes (1200m), Bottle Of Smoke in the Group 2 $220,000 Angus Armanasco Stakes (1400m) and Suavito in the Group 1 $400,000 Futurity Stakes (1400m).