Three jockeys who ransack Victorian Airbnb with ‘blood and wine’ lodge appeal for sanctions
Three Victorian jockeys banned from the spring carnival for attending an illegal Airbnb party have filed appeals against the penalties imposed by the race marshals.
Mark Zahra, Ben Melham and Ethan Brown stayed at the Mornington Peninsula property last Wednesday with top rider Jamie Kah and apprentice jockey Céline Gaudray.
All five pleaded guilty to “failure or refusal to comply with an order, directive or requirement of the stewards or an official”.
Jockey Ben Melham (pictured) has appealed against the penalties imposed by the race marshals alongside Mark Zahra and Ethan Brown
Jamie Kah (pictured) has apologized for his actions but has so far not joined the tender
Last week, the Stewards suspended their racing licenses for three months, which means none of them can participate in the 2021 Spring Racing Carnival.
Zahra, Melham and Brown have each appealed against the driving bans and fines imposed, while Kah has apologized for his behavior and has so far not joined the candidacy.
“I am deeply embarrassed and disappointed in myself,” she said in a statement on Twitter on Friday.
Several cleaning crews, steam cleaners, and a mobile pool cleaner were needed to browse an Airbnb property (pictured) which hosted an illegal party attended by star jockey Jamie Kah
During this time, it also emerged that other charges were brought against the jockeys for allegedly lying about the party.
The stewards say that when they interviewed Mark Zahra on August 28, he claimed he was not at Airbnb, but then changed his story later that day and admitted to attending.
“Evidence presented by Mark Zahra to RV Stewards during the morning interview on August 28, 2021 is alleged to be false and / or misleading,” the steward’s report said.
Brown, Kah, Melham and Gaudray are also accused of covering up Zahra, failing to tell the flight attendants he was at home.
The five runners will again face the court on the false evidence charges, while Melham, Zahra and Brown will also have a hearing on the appeal instructions.
All five pleaded guilty to ‘failing or refusing to comply with an order, directive or requirement of flight attendants or an official’ when they broke Covid rules at the Mornington Peninsula residence (pictured )
The racing industry has been allowed to continue operating under Covid restrictions, and Racing Victoria says more than 750 racing meetings have been held safely since the start of the pandemic.
The first hoop Jamie Kah, 25, who is engaged to compatriot Clayton Douglas, has been charged with breaking curfew rules in Victoria and fined $ 5,452.
This will prove to be a costly mistake, as the country’s top rider, who has ridden over 100 winners this season, was banned from the lucrative spring carnival, where she could have won up to $ 300,000.
Gun jockey Jamie Kah (pictured) let his hair down this week with other jockeys in violation of Covid rules following relationship dramas with fiance Clayton Douglas (the couple, pictured above)
Ms Kah and Mr Douglas have reportedly been living apart recently as the couple go through “relationship difficulties”, the Sun Herald reported.
A cleaner at the Airbnb where Ms Kah lived claimed the luxury vacation home was ransacked after the illegal party.
The housekeeper found what she believed to be bloodstains and traces of wine on the floor and even on the sofa of the lavish short-term rental in Mornington, south Melbourne, when she arrived on Friday afternoon.
Several other workers and steam cleaners had to clean up the three-story property, which sold for $ 1,225,000 last year.
Jockey Jamie Kah apologized via Twitter on Friday, writing: “I am deeply embarrassed and disappointed in myself”
Mornington Airbnb owners reportedly felt the booking was made by essential workers according to letter of apology written to neighbors
“The place was totally trashed, an absolute mess,” the cleaner told the Herald Sun earlier this week.
“There was blood everywhere on the couch. The red wine looked like it had been taken around the house.
A neighbor, who wished not to be named, told the publication she knew the owners of the house, saying they were “extremely sorry and angry about what had happened”.
She also heard the police knocking on the rental house door just after midnight, saying, “It was really loud. You could literally hear everything.
Police were called to the Tallis Drive property with a noise complaint just before midnight, apparently after hearing from a partner who was estranged from one of the jockeys.
“Upon arrival, officers located six people inside, all allegedly outside their 5 km radius and in violation of the curfew,” Victoria police said in a statement.
All six were fined $ 5,452 each for violating the instructions of the Chief Medical Officer of Health.
The four riders also pleaded guilty to charges brought by the race marshals of “failure or refusal to comply with an order, directive or requirement of the marshals or an official”.
Champion jockey Jamie Kah (left) and three other riders, including apprentice Céline Gaudray (right), have been fined for breaking the Melbourne lockdown for an Airbnb party
Kah apologized for his behavior.
“I am deeply embarrassed and disappointed in myself,” she said in a statement on Twitter.
“There is no excuse for what I did and I let myself down, my family and friends, the racing industry and all the Victorians doing the right thing in this lockdown.
“I deserve the sanction imposed by the stewards and I will take the time to reflect on my actions and their impact on so many people.”
Cleaners described the rental as “totally trashed” when they saw blood and wine stains on the carpet and sofa.
A two-day racing court investigation into the incident ended on Friday.
The suspension expires on November 25 at midnight.
Stewards said they took riders’ guilty pleas and expressions of remorse into account, but the penalties had to be sufficient to deter others from committing Covid offenses.
Ethan Brown was one of four jockeys to pull out for 14 days after alleged Covid violation
Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley said he was “bitterly disappointed” with the jockeys.
“We are always disappointed when people don’t play by the rules and we understand that Racing Victoria is taking immediate action and… will send a strong message,” he told reporters on Friday.
Racing Victoria general manager Giles Thompson condemned the riders’ actions.
“These individuals could have endangered the very continuity of our sport and blatantly ignored the broader implications of the community by their selfish and thoughtless actions,” he said in a statement Thursday.
He also warned of the “critical need” for the industry to follow Covid-19 guidelines ahead of the Spring Racing Carnival.
The racing industry has been allowed to continue operating under Covid restrictions and Racing Victoria says more than 750 racing meetings have been held safely since the start of the pandemic.
Last year, the Melbourne Cup carnival took place without spectators at the generally crowded Flemington Racecourse.