Investigation into Gary Ablett runner Baron Archer laid to lose before finishing third in five-horse field   Leave a comment

Investigation into Gary Ablett runner Baron Archer laid to lose before finishing third in five-horse field

Baron Archer finishes second last in a six-horse trial at Cranbourne in February. Picture

Baron Archer finishes second last in a six-horse trial at Cranbourne in February. Picture: Derrick den Hollander Source:News Corp Australia

JOCKEY Ben Melham and trainer Jason Warren are assisting with an investigation over “abnormal betting patterns” surrounding a beaten ­favourite part-owned by AFL star Gary Ablett.

Racing Victoria’s probe centres on the performance of Baron Archer at Echuca on March 8.

The gelding finished third after starting $2.80 favourite in a five-horse field.

The Herald Sun understands ­stewards are alarmed at betting trends that show Baron Archer was laid heavily to lose.

Melham said on Sunday he was not concerned by the probe.

“The stewards are just doing their job,” he said.

“I’ve been more than happy to comply with them in assisting their inquiry and will continue to do so. My job is to give the horse every possible chance, which is clearly evident.”

While no charges have been laid yet, there are explosive claims the ­investigation has uncovered links to a disgraced racing figure.

Trainer Jason Warren after Ben Melham piloted Rhythm In Paris to victory for the stable a

Trainer Jason Warren after Ben Melham piloted Rhythm In Paris to victory for the stable at Caulfield several seasons ago. Source: News Limited

The person, whom the Herald Sun has chosen not to name, is closely associated with the account used to lay Baron Archer.

The account owner is believed to be involved in a relationship with the exiled racing figure and also works for a leading stable.

Chief steward Terry Bailey said none of Baron Archer’s owners, including Ablett, were being investigated.

Gary Ablett is not being investigated. Picture: Adam Head

Gary Ablett is not being investigated. Picture: Adam HeadSource: News Corp Australia

“There is an investigation on foot and a number of people have been interviewed,” Bailey said.

“What sparked it (the investigation) was the abnormal betting.

“The trainer Jason Warren has been questioned. Ben Melham was questioned after the race and has been questioned since.”

Melham told stewards at Echuca on the day of the race he had been disappointed with Baron Archer’s performance.

Stewards said Melham told them Baron Archer “raced one-paced and did not quicken when placed under pressure shortly after straightening”.

“He further explained that he had ridden the gelding in two recent trials and in his opinion Baron Archer had been somewhat disappointing in those trials,” the stewards report said.

Questioned via telephone, Warren told stewards the performance “was of a satisfactory standard”.

The Herald Sun understands Warren had failed to notify stewards Baron Archer had undergone throat surgery before resuming at Echuca.

Originally published as Ablett horse centre of betting probe

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Posted May 4, 2015 by belesprit09 in Uncategorized

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