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'I watched a recording of it and I did begin to have my doubts'.


THE trainers of six of the eight horses whose performances under Gary Carter were at the centre of the Jockey Club's investigation into the disgraced rider yesterday offered mixed responses to his five-year disqualification.

While John Dunlop, a longstanding supporter of Carter, and Tom Keddy both offered their support, others were noticeably unwilling to do so, with one claiming that suspicions had been raised even before one of the Carter-ridden horses had run.

Gerald Ham, who sent out Saxe-Coburg to finish sixth under Carter in a mile-and-ahalf Warwick handicap, said: "I got a call before the race from the owner, Tom Dalley, who was at Warwick, to tell me he thought something funny was going on.

"Tom had gone to have a hell of a bet on the horse but he said he was drifting, which was very strange.

"I didn't see the race at the time, but afterwards I got another call from Tom, who was incensed. He said he thought the jockey had thrown the race, but I told him that he shouldn't be so stupid.

"Then, though, I watched a recording and I did begin to have my doubts. Gary had ridden a very strange race.

Saxe-Coburg was a hardpulling horse who needed burying in the pack, but Gary had positioned him on the wide outside.

"Then, going past the post, the horse seemed fresh and full of running, so we did suspect something."

Tim McCarthy was responsible for two of Carter's mounts, the most controversial being Dodona, who was beaten a short head at Lingfield.

"I wasn't happy with either of the rides as he didn't ride to order," said McCarthy yesterday.

"He was told to make all on Tasneef but he held the horse up, and he gave Dodona too much to do and should have won by three lengths. He gave her one crack and that was it.

"I'm still hacked off by what happened. I'm not revelling in kicking a man while he's down, but it's not water under the bridge and I'll stand up for the Jockey Club over what's happened."

Carter was given a ten-day suspension by the Ascot stewards for his effort on Lilli Marlane, whose trainer George Margarson yesterday said Carter's quiet style made it hard to judge what the jockey's intentions had been.

"I just thought Gary gave the horse a very bad ride," said Margarson.

"He has been very, very foolish and I feel sorry for him to be honest.

"He's a nice lad and I thought he had a few more years in him as a jockey, but he's thrown it all away."

Keddy, the trainer of Silvaline, third under Carter at P ontefract, claimed that the now-retired rider had been "hounded", and said: "I don't think he did anything wrong. The winner of the race was an odds-on shot, so my horse was not good enough to win."

Dunlop was equally positive about Carter and yesterday defended his fast-finishing sixth on Kristal's Dream in a Windsor two-year-old maiden.

He said: "I have nothing to say except that I believe there was absolutely nothing untoward about the way the horse was ridden."

Ben Hanbury, who trained another of the eight horses under investigation, declined to comment. Alec Stewart, the remaining trainer involved, died last year.
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Oct 6, 2005
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