07/30/2013 11:15AM

Fairmount Park: Stewards launch probe into race


Stewards at Fairmount Park are reportedly looking into a race last Tuesday at the southern Illinois track to determine if other riders in the race may have tried to allow 70-year-old R.A. “Cowboy” Jones to win the race. One steward, Patrick Bovenzi, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that their probe is “still in its investigatory stage.”

The race was a bottom-level maiden-claiming route July 23 in which Jones rode the runner-up and even-money favorite, My Kentucky Breeze. Jones was trying to become the first known jockey in American racing history to win races in seven different decades.

The winner by 1 3/4 lengths was Ola D., ridden by Uriel Lopez. My Kentucky Breeze looked like a winner when Lopez and Ola D. blew the turn and went far wide into the stretch. But with less than a furlong to go, Ola D. regained momentum and rallied past My Kentucky Breeze to win. Magnificent Mandy was third, with jockey Sidney Lejeune never going to his whip.

Jones said when reached by phone Monday in his hometown of Henderson, Ky., that he had not heard anything about it and that he was surprised.

“Of course, everyone in the grandstand was wanting me to win it,” Jones said. “But that doesn’t mean they’re not going to try.”

The stewards were not available Monday, a dark day at Fairmount. Racing was to resume Tuesday.