Thursday December 5, 2013 ~ John Zucal, ERA Chief Steward, recently headed an inquiry into weights claimed for Apprentice Marc Monaghan during November 2013. Monaghan claimed 3 kilograms allowance instead of 2.5 kilograms in 25 races from 2 November – 29 November at Sharjah, Meydan, Abu Dhabi, and Jebel Ali. The matter was discovered following a Stewards audit of Apprentice claims.
On inquiry it was established that Apprentice Monaghan had returned from Ireland to UAE for this racing season having ridden 28 career wins however, this did not include the winner Apprentice Monaghan had ridden in March 2013 at Sharjah on a Purebred Arabian (AF MURSID (AE)). The Irish Turf Club do not recognize, for the purposes of calculating Apprentice Weight Claims, Arabian winners however Arabian winners are taken into calculation in the UAE. This made his total career wins 29.
At the Jebel Ali race meeting on 1, November 2013, Monaghan rode the winner, MAQARAAT (IRE)). Accordingly, this was Apprentice Monaghan’s 30th win and consequently, pursuant to ERA 34 (i) his claim should have reduced to 2.5kgms.
Apprentice Monaghan explained that he was under the mistaken but honest belief that Arabian winners did not count in relation to calculating Apprentice Claims in the UAE.
Pursuant to ERA Rule 34 (iv) the horses ridden by Apprentice Monaghan from 2 November 2013 when claiming a 3kgm allowance were disqualified and placings adjusted accordingly. In this period Apprentice Marc Monaghan rode twenty five (25) horses including one (1) winner that being QASSAM W’RSAN at Sharjah on 23 November 2013.
Apprentice Monaghan admitted to a breach of ERA 9 (xvi) (b) in that he was negligent in not advising the Registry Office of his 30th win at Jebel Ali on 1st November 2013 as required under the Rules. Apprentice Marc Monaghan was fined the sum of AED 5,000.
ERA has put into place the following steps to improve internal processes and to prevent a re-occurrence of this nature namely:
· All apprentices will be issued immediately with an Apprentice Claims Book in which all wins ridden by the Apprentice are recorded. It will be the Apprentice’s responsibility to write all wins and then have the Claims Book signed off by the Stewards or the Clerk of Scales at the race meeting he has been successful.
· ERA IT will write a program whereby on receipt of official results all winners ridden by Apprentices will be updated automatically and an email alert sent to Racing Department advising of number of wins of apprentice.
· The ERA Clerk of Scales also to keep a record of all wins of all Apprentices.
Apprentice Monaghan’s Official Weight Claim is now 2.5kgms.