Desormeaux fined by Santa Anita

February 16, 1993|By Orange County Register

ARCADIA, Calif. -- Early yesterday, Kent Desormeaux learned he had been fined $1,000 by the Santa Anita stewards for failing to urge his mount to the wire in the ninth race Saturday.

It was Desormeaux's third fine in three years, following one for $200 and another for $500, for violating California racing rules.

Had he persevered with Susan's Corsair in Saturday's 7-furlong xTC finale, the stewards felt, the 4-year-old gelding would have finished second instead of third.

Desormeaux stopped driving Kotashaan hard in the final stages of yesterday's $219,600 San Luis Obispo Handicap. But he violated no rule.

The 5-year-old French-bred already had overpowered the field en route to a 7-length victory in the 1 1/2 -mile turf race.

The 9-5 second betting choice in the field of eight, Kotashaan launched a powerful move with 3 furlongs to go and won in 2 minutes, 27.64 seconds, suggesting the Dick Mandella trainee will be a force to reckon with in Santa Anita's two other long-distance grass stakes, the 1 1/2 -mile San Luis Rey on March 21 and the 1 3/4 -mile San Juan Capistrano Handicap on April 18.

Senior steward Pete Pedersen said Desormeaux, winner of the 1992 Eclipse Award as North America's top jockey, would be subject to more severe penalties, such as suspension, for failing to ride horses out to the wire if his transgressions were calculated.

"But he's not doing these things on purpose," Pedersen said. "He's just fallen into some bad habits."

"The only reason the stewards are reacting is because somebody's complaining, and I don't care," Desormeaux said.

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