Azkadellia and Others Banned Pending Ownership Investigation
If you cannot beat them, ban them.
Such would seem to be the case as Victorian racing stewards launched a re-investigation of the ownership of Azkadellia.
The mare has been banned from racing until it can be clearly established who indeed owns her, along with her stablemates Hart, Loveable Rogue and Mr. Simples.
The precipitating factor was the appearance of Peter Foster at Eagle Farm to watch Azkadellia run in the Group 1 Stradbroke Handicap back in June. She ran 10th in that race just two months after winning the Group 1 Queen of the Turf Stakes at Randwick.
Azkadellia is trained by Ciaron Maher and is listed as belonging to Ben Connolly. Connolly’s attorney has stated that Connolly is co-operating with the investigation.
The stewards earlier discovered that it was Foster’s niece, Arabella, who was the registered owner of the mare. That was over a year ago, and Chief Steward Terry Bailey said, “…All the checks and balances were looked at; documents including bank records. We were satisfied. There was total transparency.”
Now, it seems to be a different story. The timing is not exactly ideal for Azkadellia. She was set to return to the track in the middle of the spring racing carnival before heading overseas to run at Sha Tin in Hong Kong in December.