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Oliver’s Derby Day hopes rest with judge

Champion jockey Damien Oliver’s last hopes of riding in Saturday’s prestigious Victoria Derby meeting rest with a judge.

Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal vice president Judge Pamela Jenkins will announce at 11.30am on Tuesday what penalty Oliver faces after finding him guilty of reckless riding.

Oliver needs his suspension cut from 20 to 17 meetings to allow him to ride on Saturday, when he has five rides booked including Flying Artie in the Group One Coolmore Stud Stakes and Highlad in the Group One Victoria Derby.

Racing Victoria stewards want the original suspension upheld, saying his ride in the Blue Sapphire Stakes on October 12 was a grave case of reckless riding.

Oliver’s barrister Damian Sheales has argued the penalty is too harsh given the time of year.

Oliver’s suspension began after Caulfield Cup day and he can return for the Melbourne Cup, Oaks Day and Stakes Day.

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