Wed, Jul 26, 2006 - Page 18 News List

Jockey to be investigated after head-butting horse

AP , LONDON

Jockey Paul O'Neill will be investigated by the sport's governing body after television replays showed him head-butting his horse City Affair on Monday.

The Horseracing Regulatory Authority made the decision to hold an inquiry after reviewing TV footage from the incident at the Stratford races on Sunday.

"We haven't got a date set, but we are going to go for some time next week -- our inquiry day is usually on the Thursday," HRA spokesman Owen Byrne said.

City Affair was being unruly in the parade ring, ultimately throwing O'Neill. The jockey got to his feet and grabbed the reins, pulling the horse to him, before lowering the butt of his helmet into it.

"Angry jockey does a `Zidane' to his horse," read the headline of London's Evening Standard.

City Affair went on to finish fourth in the two-mile event. O'Neill was given a caution by stewards for his use of the whip in the race.

The 26-year-old O'Neill, who has ridden 51 winners, was previously questioned by the HRA over his ride of a novice hurdler in March.

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