Tag Archives: Racing

Scottish Double For Downey At Ayr

Kildare Jockey Robbie Downey enjoyed a double at Ayr Racecourse yesterday as he partnered ‘Contact’ and ‘Baryshnikov’ to victory for trainer David Barron at the Scottish track.

Downey got the first of his double home in front after timing his run to perfection to get favourite ‘Contact’ up to pip ‘Headingley’ by a head in ‘The Gribbens Taxis Median Auction Maiden Stakes’.

The Kilcock native settled the 2 year old early in the race, making headway to chase the leaders from the two furlong marker, keeping on well inside the final furlong, before pipping ‘Headingley’ and Jason Hart on the line to take the win by a head, with ‘Berry Edge’ back in third.

Downey onboard Contact on the way back to the winners enclosure at Ayr.

Two hours later, Downey and Barron were back in the winners enclosure with the ‘Baryshnikov’. Downey had the 4-year-old was towards the rear early on but like when onboard ‘Contact’, he slowly made headway, though on this occasion the pair got to the front to lead narrowly at the 1f pole and despite edging left on the run in, they kept on to win by 3/4 of a length.

It was the second time in the space of three weeks that Downey had got ‘Baryshnikov’ home in front, after their victory at Chester on September 11th.

Downey Makes Perfect Contact At Ayr

Kilcock Jockey Robbie Downey timed his run to perfection as he got the favourite ‘Contact’ up to pip ‘Headingley’ by a head in ‘The Gribbens Taxis Median Auction Maiden Stakes’ at Ayr today.

Downey, who was riding for trainer David Barron, settled the 2 year old early in the race, making headway to chase the leaders from the two furlong marker, keeping on well inside the final furlong, before pipping ‘Headingley’ and Jason Hart on the line to take the win by a head, with ‘Berry Edge’ back in third.

By Robert Cox

Downey protests his innocence following French suspension

Kildare jockey Robbie Downey is actively protesting his innocence saying he will definitely be appealing and doing everything he can to clear his name after receiving a 6-month suspension from racing authorities in France after allegedly testing positive for taking cocaine.

The 24 year old, who is based in Britain, has had two independent hair tests carried out, which returned negative results for the drug, however the authorities in France have refused to take them into consideration.

Understandably Downey is upset by this and has made public the results of his tests, saying he is “bitterly disappointed to have been found in breach” and that authorities have ignored the medical evidence he presented which shows he has not taken the drug.

An official report posted by France Galop reveals that Downey, who has been used mainly this season by trainers David O’Meara and David Barron and who has ridden nine UK winners, tested positive for metabolics of cocaine while in action at Lion d’Angers on June 19th of this year.

At a France Galop hearing on October 3rd, the Kilcock native was found guilty. The verdict has stunned Downey and indeed the Professional Jockey’s Association, who will ask, if necessary, that the BHA reciporate the punishment which is due to come into effect from October 24th to April 23rd 2020.

The PJA have claimed a complete miscarriage of justice after the France Galop imposed a six month suspension for allegedly riding under the influence of cocaine, despite Downey providing two hair tests that returned negative for the drug.

The PJA’s plan to appeal this comes in light of the BHA announcing last month that it may introduce hair testing, give that drug use can be detected in hair three months after consumption.

The PJA are extremely concerned that there could be a serious risk of a miscarriage of justice and chief executive Paul Struthers, who is firmly behind Downey, stated; “It must be extremely upsetting to be facing a six month suspension when you have never taken cocaine and I am very concerned that there is a risk of a miscarriage of justice.

“As soon as Robbie found out that his ‘A’ sample had returned a positive result he immediately paid for a hair sample at an accredited British laboratory in order to prove his innocence. He also paid for a second hair sample at an accredited French laboratory and both of these tests returned negative. These results clearly demonstrate that he hasn’t taken cocaine. We are greatly concerned that these two seperate and independent results have been ignored by France Galop.

“It is unclear why France Galop is refusing to apply the same testing thresholds that operate in other testing regimes and why they refuse to disclose the levels in Robbie’s urine, this despite the fact Robbie asked them to do so when reporting the analysis of his ‘B’ sample.

“We are therefore taking the unprecedented step of making those hair samples public to demonstrate that Robbie is telling the truth.

“The BHA recently announced that they would be bringing in hair sampling as an additional testing matrix and Robbie has two such samples that prove his innocence.

“In those circumstances it would be a grave injustice were he to be banned for six months for something he clearly hasn’t done.

In the publicised summary of the hearing the France Galop noted that, while the hair samples showed that Downey was not a habitual user of cocaine, they did not prove conclusively that he had not consumed the drug.

Downey said; “I am 100% innocent and have never taken the drug. I have two negative hair samples to back this up and I will be definitely appealing and doing everything I can to clear my name”

Davis Wears The Crown At York!

Maynooth man Sean Davis partnered the Richard Fahey trained Crownthorpe to a convincing win in the ‘Racebets Money Back 2nd 3rd 4th Handicap Stakes’ at York Racecourse in the 2.40 on Friday.

3lb claimer Davis, who is currently in a battle with Cieren Fallon for the British Apprentice Championship title, sent Crownthorpe to the front just over one furlong out before keeping on strongly to win by 2 & 1/4 lengths, with Firmament back in second place.

Today’s victory is in stark contrast to the last time the pair partnered up at York on August 22nd when Crownthorpe unseated Davis at the start before galloping on with the rest of the field.

There is no denying that he can be a tricky horse on his day but owners and trainers alike will forgive him this following today’s fine win at one of Britain’s finest and most popular tracks.

One punter on Twitter said of Crownthorpe: “Lst four runs. U36F Not often you see a horse with more letters than numbers in his Flat form but you can add a 1 now to Crownthorpe, who has won the 2.40 at York”

Crownthorpe also won best turned out for the race. And jockey Davis is now back to within seven of Fallon with just over a week to go in the race to be crowned Champion Apprentice.

Downey’s trip to Cork worth every Penny

Robbie Downey with connections of ‘Miss Power’ after victory at Naas on May 1st.

Kilcock jockey Robbie Downey picked up his 2nd win in the month of May when he guided Mademoiselle Penny to victory at Cork on Saturday, May 6th.

Having gone through a barren spell of three months without success, Downey returned to the winners enclosure with Miss Power (7/1) for Edward Lynam on bank holiday Monday in a 5f handicap before adding to his roll of honour at Cork on Saturday. 

The Patrick Flynn trained Mademoiselle Penny (9/2 2Fav) went 2 lengths clear inside the final furlong before drifting left under pressure but held on ahead of Alcander back in 2nd, with Jazz Ranger back in 3rd. 

Downey will be hoping this is the start of a winning run as he continues his quest to reach his first 100 winners. He currently lies on 75.