The longest six months of jockey Jimmy Quinn’s life came to an end this morning when he rode out work for Marco Botti on Newmarket Heath this morning. Quinn had been banned for a full six months for his connections with a ring of people conspiring to lay horses.
Quinn’s ban was light in comparison to those handed down to the other people involved, recognising that he was cleared of passing inside information. He seems still bemused by what, in fact, he’s been found to have done by the British Horseracing Authority enquiry that he shouldn’t have. He says, “When they (Maurice Sines and his cohorts) approached me it was about buying a yearling or two year old to have with them in training. I didn’t have a clue who these people were and, as is in my nature, I’m too easy-going with people.”
Now that he has clearance from the BHA to resume riding, he’s looking forward to resuming the job he has been doing all his life. Although one trainer approached him to ride at Musselburgh today, Quinn could not take up the offer, as his clearance had not come through from the BHA. Once that arrived yesterday afternoon he was free to start up again.
He said, “I can’t wait to get back and I think I’m fitter than when I was last riding because of all the work I have done.” That has included regular spells in the gym. With fitness assured, he expects to be back on the track in the next few days.
Quinn recognises that he’ll need to fine-tune the mental side of race riding. He says, “It is now a case of getting the racing brain back in gear and getting the judgement of pace. While I am sure they will come back soon enough, I wouldn’t want to put myself – or an owner or trainer – under pressure by getting on a fancied horse at a big meeting straight away. I’d prefer to work away quietly and just let things happen.”
That sounds just like Jimmy Quinn. Good to have you back.