- Mick Appleby’s husband has been banned from horse racing for 12 weeks
- Jonny Clayton is said to have lost his temper and caused serious injury to a horse
Horse racing trainer Mick Appleby’s husband has been banned from the sport for 12 weeks after reportedly ‘losing his temper’ and causing a horse ‘serious injury’.
Jonny Clayton was found to have contributed to Twilight Jazz having a ‘significant’ jaw injury, with ‘full thickness laceration’ to either side of her mouth following an incident last summer, as reported by the Racing Post.
The horse was said to be ‘very difficult to handle’ and often refused to move, the report said – adding that the bit – a metal object that goes in the horse’s mouth – was what caused the damage.
However, it could not be determined whether its injury was caused by Clayton pulling on a rope repeatedly or the horse stepping on it after it knocked Clayton to the ground.
Other members of Appleby’s staff witnessed the incident before coming forward – the report goes on.
Jonny Clayton (R) The husband of trainer Mick Appleby (L)has been banned from racing for 12 weeks after ‘losing his temper’ and injuring a horse
Clayton has had half of his ban suspended for 12 months after agreeing a plea deal with the British Horseracing Authority after he accepted fault for the incident.
Charlotte Davison, who was representing the BHA at a hearing looking into the incident, said: ‘There can be no escaping the fact this is a serious incident and that a significant injury was caused to the horse by virtue of Mr Clayton’s actions.
‘The fact is he lost his temper and he accepted that, and that his actions led to the injury.’
Speaking on behalf of Clayton, who did not attend the hearing, George McGrath said: ‘When I have spoken to Mr Clayton he is extremely remorseful for his actions, but perhaps more tellingly he is very embarrassed. He is a professional horse person and prides himself on such. He’s extremely contrite for his actions on that morning.
‘The junior members of stable staff displayed great courage in coming forward because that’s not an easy thing to do. For me, it puts into context the amount of care and passion my members, and those working in racing, have for their horses.’