Fallon banned from British rides

Last updated at 16:47 07 July 2006

Kieren Fallon will not be allowed to continue riding in Britain after being charged as part of a police investigation into alleged race-fixing.

Fellow jockeys Fergal Lynch and Darren Williams, who have also been charged with conspiracy to defraud Betfair customers, will also not be allowed to ride in Britain until after the result of any trial.

The three riders this morning appeared before a special panel at the Horseracing Regulatory Authority's Headquarters on Shaftesbury Avenue.

Fallon, Williams and Lynch were three of 11 people charged by the City Of London Police on Monday. Trainer Alan Berry is the other individual licensed by the HRA to have been charged.

Berry was allowed to continue to train after Tuesday's hearing at the HRA permitted the Lancashire handler to carry on sending out runners from his Cockerham base.

The HRA's special panel decided a ban would be "disproportionate" for Berry as any trial is not likely to begin before the spring of 2007.

However, today's hearing found that Fallon should be prohibited from riding in Britain on his Irish licence "until the conclusion of the trial or further orders".

The HRA panel's decision means Fallon will miss out on his ride in Saturday's Coral-Eclipse at Sandown, where he was set to partner the Aidan O'Brien-trained Aussie Rules.

'I am utterly amazed the police were able to charge me based on the evidence I have seen'

The panel, chaired by HRA board director Sir Michael Connell, also found that Lynch and Williams should not be granted licences "until the conclusion of their trial or further orders".

In a statement issued on Fallon's behalf by his solicitors, BCL Burton Copeland, the rider said: "I am obviously devastated by the HRA decision.

"I always thought that a man was innocent until proved guilty.

"I cannot understand this decision as I am confident that I have done nothing wrong, and my lawyers are confident that the case against me has no validity whatsoever.

"In fact I am utterly amazed the police were able to charge me based on the evidence I have seen and the questions that they have been asking me this year.

"My livelihood is dependent upon racing and I will be appealing against this decision as it is extremely harsh and inconsistent given the HRA panel's verdict on Alan Berry published earlier this week.

"I am grateful for the support I have received from many trainers and owners around the world.

"However, unless my suspension is lifted my career is in ruins as I cannot ask owners or trainers to support me elsewhere when I am prevented from riding in the UK."

A spokesperson from Ballydoyle said that Johnny Murtagh will replace Fallon aboard French 2000 Guineas winner Aussie Rules in the Eclipse.

John Blake, chief executive of the Jockeys' Association, said: "All three jockeys are devastated by the result today. They are very taken aback and surprised. I don't want to say anything else as appeals are pending."

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