Gai Waterhouse Claims Horse Substitution was Animal Welfare Concern
True, it was nothing along the lines of the Fine Cotton affair that resulted in Big Bill Waterhouse and company being sent off for many years, but the irony surrounding the recent charges against Gai Waterhouse, associated with the dynasty via marriage, is inescapable.
Conduct Prejudicial to the Image of Racing is the official description of the charges levied against Ms. Waterhouse and her cohort, Adrian Bott.
Known as rule AR175 (a), the infraction occurred when the two trainers did not produce English, Serena Bay and Debonairly for trackwork on the Randwick course proper (emphasis added by us to suggest that the three thoroughbreds may actually have appeared on Randwick improper), as part of a promotion dubbed Breakfast With the Stars.
Instead of the three promised horses, Waterhouse and Bott substituted (notice we did not use the term rung in) Fabrizio, Sort After and Stampede, adorned in the racing colours of the advertised horses.
According to statements Waterhouse made to stewards, she had intended to work the original three, but her stable foreman had early the morning in question, 3.20 am., so very early, told her that various maladies made it best to not work the horses.
All three horses had their lessons prepared, along with a note from their mums’, so the kerfuffle seems to be much ado about nothing, except when your father-in-law is associated with one of the most famous, if ham-handed, ring ins of all time.