I've probably been a bit harsh on Adam there.
He is right. If you are going to have rules then you need to stick to them. Our racing history is full of cases where champions were separated from their riders because of suspension. Kingston Town had 3 different jockeys in his 3 Cox Plate wins and I think suspension played a role there.
As for stewards looking after the interests of the club in promotion.....
This case is not without precedent. There was the strange case where Here De Angels was moved from a barrier alongside Black Caviar to the outside barrier in a race because of concerns about the barrier manners of HDA under threat of Black Caviar being scratched.
The modern day racing product seems to acknowledge that there is a big financial return on promoting champions and their jockeys.
Winx turning up on August 20th with Hugh Bowman aboard will guarantee more people through the gate than would normally be there.
I think it started with the VRC promoting Lonhro for the famous 2004 Australian Cup. He was unbeaten that campaign and a huge crowd turned up with the promotion about his final Melbourne appearance. The scenes of the crowd wearing cerise, and the spectacular circumstances of the win made it one of the most memorable days in Australian racing history.
Along came Black Caviar who would bring the crowds in. The Brisbane Racing Club lured the great horse to Brisbane for the Doomben 10,000 by putting it on for the connections. She didn't let them down and a huge crowd watched her bolt in.
Now that Winx is here we are going through the same again. Originally I don't think Waller was considering a second start in Melbourne as he said in an interview a month or so ago it would be the Cox Plate only but acknowledged approaches from Victorian Administrators. The other day after her trial win he was saying now she will start in the Caulfield Stakes.
The reality is that if she wins her 3 starts in Sydney, Caulfield Stakes Day will now become Winx at Caulfield Day and the club will get a financial bonanza and a bumper crowd.
Is there anything wrong with giving special dispensation to champion horses and riders to promote racing? Probably is. But you are not going to win that argument in the Age Of Marketing.