Future Hall of Fame Jockey Mike Smith has been denied his mounts in Britain by UK Border Authorities. It seems that the UK Border Authorities feel that Mike Smith is only allowed to ride at Folkstone and that riding at Lingfield which he was scheduled to do would be a violation of his racing permit and would jeopardize not only his future racing in Britain but also his ability to travel to the UK.
Come on, being banned from the UK for riding a horse? Sad but true and that’s exactly what UK officials have threatened to do!
Adrian Beaumont, Mike Smith’s agent in Britain, said: “What happened is the UK Border Agency just rang us and the conditions of his visa say he can’t ride outside Folkestone. The UK Border Agency don’t feel [riding at Lingfield] is related to what he is doing at Folkestone. We don’t think that and neither do the trainers, it’s frustrating.
“[The UK Border Agency] said they won’t stop him [from riding at Lingfield] but it might have an impact on future trips so he’ll just ride at Folkestone.”
Beaumont added: “He’s very disappointed as he was looking forward to meeting the other jockeys and the media.
“One or two of the trainers that booked him said their horses had a good chance and he was hoping to break his duck. He’s still very much looking forward to riding on Thursday.”
So basically UK Officials have said, we won’t stop you on this trip but we will never let you back in the UK again if you do which is the typical way for the UK to deal with anything… We let the European riders in along with their horses and trainers to ride in our most prestigious races such as the Kentucky Derby and Breeders’ Cup, maybe they should take some notes on how to treat your neighbours! Imagine the outcry if we banned Goldikova or any of the UK riders or trainers…
Thankfully, we are bigger people than that!