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Grand National-winning Leighton Aspell was involved in a mass jockeys’ rebellion against the racecourse stewards at Aintree racecourse after Pineau De Re’s 25-1 success in the Aintree marathon on Saturday.

All bar one of the 40 jockeys who rode in the National failed to co-operate with a stewards inquiry into farcical scenes at the start of the world famous steeplechase.

Long after Pineau De Re’s victory, Aspell and his weighing room colleagues staged a mutiny by refusing to hear the outcome of the inquiry into the pre-race drama.

The probe was held to find out why all but one of the 40 riders had attempted to form a line before the Grand National’s official off time of 1515 GMT.

The one jockey not involved in that action was ironically Brendan Powell whose mount Battle Group had triggered the false start when planting his hooves and refusing to budge.

As 70,000 racegoers and a global television audience of 600 million looked on, an official false start was called when the starter’s tape was broken.

The Racing Post newspaper explained on its website: “The racecourse inquiry had attempted to investigate whether the riders had lined up before being invited to do so and subsequently disobeyed the starter’s instructions, additionally putting the safety of one of the starting staff at risk.”

With the stewards calling the jockeys to hear their verdict all the riders except Powell refused to leave the weighing room.

An impasse ensued, with the riders now facing punishment from British racing’s ruling authority the BHA.

BHA spokesman Robin Mounsey commented: “While we regret that the jockeys refused to return to the stewards’ room to allow the inquiry to be concluded, the referring of the matter to the (BHA) Disciplinary Panel will mean a re-hearing and hopefully an opportunity to take this matter forward in a more constructive manner.

“It is undoubtedly a challenge to hold such an inquiry with such a number of riders in the aftermath of the Grand National.”

Professional Jockeys Association chief executive Paul Struthers, reported that jockeys were unhappy over “certain aspects of the conduct of the inquiry”.

 
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