08/27/2009 11:00PM

Soumillon, Aga Khan going separate ways


The Aga Khan is breaking relations with bad-boy jockey Christophe Soumillon. An official statement from the Aga Khan's camp on Tuesday stated that "human relations have become difficult" with the Belgian-born Soumillon, so they will part company at the end of this season, ending a lucrative eight-year partnership that included Arc victories with Dalakhani and Zarkava.

Soumillon made some disparaging comments about the height of Andre Fabre at a gala dinner in Deauville this week, incurring the wrath of the French racing establishment.

The Aga Khan left open the possibility that Soumillon, who has been champion rider in France three times and is currently third in the standings, could ride for him on an occasional basis in future. Christophe Lemaire will replace Soumillon starting next year.

Outspoken to say the least, Soumillon has attracted a lot of bad publicity with his showboating antics as he crossed the finish lines in a number of big-race victories, most memorably when he made an obscene gesture toward the Ascot grandstand after winning the 2006 King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes aboard Hurricane Run.

* Another jockey with a checkered past, Kieren Fallon, will return to action on Sept. 4 after a 12-month suspension for a second cocaine positive. Fallon is expected to be at both Lingfield and Kempton that day, but he won't be riding for his previous bosses at Coolmore, who are quite satisfied with the man who replaced him, Johnny Murtagh.