Belgian jockey Christophe Soumillon has apologized after being given a 60-day ban by France Galop for nudging another jockey of a horse.
The incident happened in the seven-stadia opener at Saint-Cloud when Soumillon – riding Syros in the Group 3 Thomas Byron Stakes – deflected an elbow to Rossa Ryan as they battled for position at the back of the field.
The Irishman initially lost his balance before falling off his mount and luckily was able to walk to the medical van for treatment.
Soumillon told At The Races: “I just got a big suspension from the stewards, I’m going to be suspended for two months, for 60 days of racing, so that’s a very, very big thing and unfortunately my end. season is now gone.
“I accept the pain for what I did, for the terrible mistake as I said, and I hope no one was hurt.
“I shouldn’t do this and I didn’t do it on purpose to hurt him. [Ryan] falling off his horse, I was just trying to hold my position but it was a misjudgment on my part.
Soumillon will be free to ride in Sunday’s £4million Arc de Triomphe due to the suspension which will not come into effect until October 14.
The Belgian can consider himself lucky after jockey Joffre Mora recently produced a similar act in Ecuador and was subsequently banned for life.
Mora pushed jockey Luis Hurtado off his mount for what seemed like no apparent reason when the pair were on a turn.
Fortunately, Hurtado escaped without injury before the stewards imposed a lifetime ban on the jockey.