A decision that could mean the end of jockey Danny Nikolic’s riding career is expected on Thursday at the conclusion of his appeal against a two year disqualification.
Nikolic is appealing the ban in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) after he was found guilty of threatening Victoria’s chief racing steward Terry Bailey and his family.
The charges stem from an encounter at the Seymour race meeting on September 4 between the rider and Bailey.
Bailey told the hearing on Wednesday he took the threats so seriously he arranged for security at his home.
Nikolic missed out on plum spring carnival rides as the result of the disqualification which the jockey has admitted will be difficult to come back from.
He had earlier lost his bid for a stay of proceedings to enable him to ride while he prepared for the appeal.
Bailey repeated his evidence given at the original inquiry before the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary (RAD) Board that Nikolic had approached him on the course at Seymour and said to him: “Keep your eyes on the road Terry.”
The jockey maintained he made the remark in a joking manner after that of a television commercial, but Bailey said on Wednesday he had never seen the ad and was “rattled” by the comment.
He said Nikolic later said to him: “We’ve all got families c*** and we know where yours lives c***.”
Bailey said that comment was delivered with “a lot of venom”.
He told the hearing before Judge Michael McNamara he phoned Racing Victoria’s integrity services manager Dayle Brown and asked if he could provide “some security at my house”.
Nikolic denies he made the second comment and has maintained it was Bailey who threatened him, promising to end his riding career.
Bailey said he stayed in Euroa that night because he had “an important matter” to attend to the following morning but said he looked in his car rear vision mirror several times while driving back to his motel.
Nikolic is also at the centre of race-fixing allegations made by Victoria Police.
He was disqualified from being involved in racing by the RAD board for two years under the rules of racing dealing with improper conduct, and one year for bringing racing into disrepute, with the sentences to be served concurrently.
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