Michael Grassick retiring

as IRTA chief executive

MICHAEL Grassick is retiring as chief executive of the Irish Racehorse Trainers Association. “I’ve been in the job for 10 years and I enjoyed it,” he said yesterday. “I am 70 this year and would like to spend more time with my family. I’ll stay on in the job until my replacement is hired.” The position is advertised on page 111.

Britain’s champion flat

apprentice suspended

MARCO Ghiani, last season’s champion apprentice jockey in Britain, has been suspended from riding on an “interim basis” by the British Horseracing Authority. There have been unconfirmed reports suggested the 23-year-old has tested positive for a banned substance.

A spokesman for the BHA said: “The BHA does not comment on ongoing investigations or speculation around possible investigations.” The Professional Jockeys Association also did not want to comment when contacted.

Ghiani enjoyed a breakthrough win at Royal Ascot last year on Saeed bin Suroor’s Real World in the Royal Hunt Cup.

Pony racing season stopped for this year

THE remainder of the 2022 pony racing season has been cancelled as a mark of respect to Jack de Bromhead, who died in a riding accident last weekend. A spokesperson for the sport said: “Our priority now is support everyone affected by this tragedy.”

Derby winner’s dam for sale

THE dam of this year’s Derby winner Desert Crown will be offered for sale at this year’s Tattersalls December Mare Sale. Aged 13, Desert Berry is by Green Desert and is in foal to Nathaniel (May 4th covering), meaning she is carrying a full-sibling to the unbeaten Derby winner. She is being consigned from owner-breeder Gary Robinson’s Strawberry Fields Stud.