Triple TJ Smith Stakes winner Chautauqua has again been barred after refusing to jump in a trial.
Champion sprinter Chautauqua will have to run twice to get a barrier certificate before he races again after refusing for a third time to compete in a Sydney barrier trial.
Chautauqua, who stayed in the gates in two trials at Randwick last week, lined up for a heat at Rosehill on Thursday as ordered by Racing NSW stewards.
He did eventually leave the gates and completed the course well behind the last runner in his heat but that canter did not convince stewards to lift the bar.
Chief steward Marc Van Gestel consulted with senior trainer John Hawkes who said Chautauqua would head to Hawkes Racing’s Melbourne stable and take part in a jump-out at Flemington on Friday week.
But if the bar is to be lifted, he will still have to run in an official trial of which there are fewer in Victoria than NSW.
“After consulting with RVL Stewards and having regard to the frequency of official barrier trials in Victoria, Stewards have determined that should connections seek to have the requirement to barrier trial on two occasions lifted in Victoria, that Chautauqua could pass one of the two tests in a Victorian official jump out which is observed by the Stewards, consistent with the current practice in that state. However, the remaining test must be in an official barrier trial,” a stewards release said.
Managing owner Rupert Legh is of the view perhaps the gelding is missing jockey Tommy Berry who is now based in Hong Kong but has been in touch to offer his services.
Berry has won the past three TJ Smith Stakes on Chautauqua and rode him to win the Chairman’s Sprint in Hong Kong in May 2016.
“I have had Tommy on the phone and Tommy is desperate to get back on the horse,” Legh told Sky Sports Radio.
“It might be one of those fairy tale type situations where there is a relationship between horse and jockey and he just wants the same jockey on board. I mentioned it to John (Hawkes) this morning and he does not think that was the case, but it may well be.”
Legh said he had not had any thoughts about retiring Chautauqua who is relatively lightly raced for a seven-year-old having had 32 starts for 13 wins and 11 minor placings for earnings of more than $8.8 million.