Trainer Robert Heathcote will vigorously defend his position as he looks to overturn the steward’s ruling which found him guilty of misconduct after he allegedly used ‘inappropriate language’, directed towards jockey Mark Diu Plessis, after the running of the last race at Eagle Farm on February 6.
Heathcote was fined the sum of $500, with $250 is to be suspended subject to Heathcote not re-offending under the same rule for the next 12 months.
Heathcote’s claim is that the exchange between himself and Du Plessis, post-race, was a private conversation. Heathcote, however, did record the exchange for use as feedback for the owners of the horse Du Plessis rode (Stuttering), a recording which Heathcote then passed on to the ownership group. This is now common policy for many stables.
The problem arose when that particular audio clip found its way onto social media, which is when stewards got involved.
It is believed Du Plessis did not make any complaint.
The finding will now go the appeal.