Jockey Christophe Soumillon has been handed a lengthy ban after he appeared to push Rossa Ryan off of his mount in a race in France. The rider appeared to push his elbow into his competitor mid-race, leading Ryan to take a nasty tumble.
Racing just below a mile at Saint-Cloud, Syros – ridden by Soumillon – appeared to swerve into Captain Wierzba – ridden by Ryan – because the pair got here around the bend in the back of the sector. Nonetheless, footage showed that the collision looked somewhat intentional, with Soumillon pushing his elbow towards Galway-born Ryan.
The 21-year-old, caught off guard by the collision, attempted to stay on his mount but soon fell to the bottom, landing on his neck. Syros was disqualified after the race, having finished second, by the Stewards.
Remarkably, Ryan did stand up from his fall okay and appears to have walked away from the astonishing incident with none serious injuries. On condition that the Stewards were so quick to disqualify Syros, the final consensus amongst racing fans was that the authorities should come down hard on the Belgian rider.
And people thoughts were correct as Soumillon confirmed to Sky Sports Racing that he had been given a two month ban. He said: “I’ve just received an enormous suspension from Gallop Stewards, I’m going to be suspended for 2 months, 60 days of racing.
“My end of season is now gone. I accept the sentence for what I did, it was a terrible mistake and hopefully no person was hurt. I shouldn’t try this and I didn’t do it on purpose to make him fall off his horse, I used to be just attempting to keep my position with the bottom but possibly I did it with a little bit of power but I don’t know. It was a misjudgement from my side.”
Nonetheless, Soumillon will still have the opportunity to ride within the Qatar Prix de L’arc de Triomphe this Sunday as his ban won’t come into effect until the 14th of October, ending on the twelfth of December. The 41-year-old is about to ride 8/1 shot Vadeni within the race, who heads to France on the back of an underwhelming finish within the Irish Champion Stakes at Leopardstown.
The colt finished third on the day, behind Arc favourite Luxembourg, and might be hoping to enhance in France. Though whether connections will still stand by Soumillon for the race stays to be seen.