04/08/2004 12:00AM

Fallon charged by Jockey Club


Jockey Kieren Fallon was charged Wednesday by the British Jockey Club of violating the group's rule prohibiting acting in a manner prejudicial to the sport's "integrity and good reputation."

The charges came as a result of a Jockey Club investigation into allegations that the rider had met with reporters from a British tabloid shortly before he blew a 10-length lead aboard his mount, Ballinger Ridge, in a maiden race at Lingfield Park on March 2. Ballinger Ridge was caught on the line by another horse, Rye.

The tabloid, The News of the World, reported that Fallon had told its reporters that Rye would beat Ballinger Ridge.

John Egan, the rider of Rye, has been similarly charged.

Fallon has already served a three-week suspension for failing to ride out the finish. He now faces a hearing before the Jockey Club Disciplinary Panel on charges of communicating information for the benefit of personal reward.

If found guilty, Fallon could be given a much longer suspension.