12/03/2009 12:00AM

Rosario case is continued

Barbara D. Livingston
Joel Rosario is accused of failing to put forth his best effort in a race at Del Mar.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Three California Horse Racing Board stewards denied a request from jockey Joel Rosario's attorney on Thursday to dismiss a case alleging that the jockey failed to put forth his best effort in a turf race at Del Mar on Sept. 6.

The case will resume Dec. 11, with defense testimony from Rosario and others. Rosario, the leading rider at the Del Mar meeting, could face a fine or suspension if he is found in violation of the rules.

Attorney Roger Licht, a former chairman of the California Horse Racing Board, represented Rosario. He called for a dismissal of the case, citing the absence of proof that Rosario failed to put forth his best effort when he rode Cedros to a fourth-place finish in a $67,390 maiden race over a mile on turf.

Licht further argued that the racing board's investigation was flawed because written reports in the case failed to include testimony from Rosario and failed to include written testimony from former jockey and current safety steward Luis Jauregui, who was presented as an expert witness by racing board investigators.

Furthermore, Licht argued, Del Mar steward Scott Chaney stated that Rosario's ride on Cedros was "questionable," but did not specify whether rules had been violated. Chaney was a steward at Del Mar along with Ingrid Fermin and Tom Ward.

Licht's request for dismissal was rejected by stewards Albert Christiansen, Kim Sawyer, and Randy Winick. The complaint was filed in September.

Cedros, the 4-1 third choice, dueled for the lead for the first half-mile of the race, dropped back to fifth on the turn, and finished fourth, 3 1/2 lengths behind race winner Sterkel.

In testimony on Thursday, Chaney described Rosario's effort as a "chilly ride."

Thursday, deputy attorney general Kenneth Jones, arguing the case on behalf of the racing board, completed testimony on behalf of the racing board, calling exercise rider Jordan Springer, trainer John Glenney, racing board investigator Rick Amieva, and Rosario.

Glenney testified that Rosario was told to keep the horse in the clear in the Sept. 6 race and that he was upset that the horse was moved to the rail for the final three furlongs.