Stewards are defended

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The Independent Online
The Jockey Club yesterday defended the decision of the stewards at Ludlow on Wednesday who allowed Oaklands Word to keep the hunter chase even though he had jumped one fence fewer than the runner-up, West Quay. The confusion arose when a fence was partially dolled off because of a stricken jockey.

The Club's John Maxse said: "The stewards had a strange set of circumstances before them, could not apportion blame, and so allowed the result to stand. The rules permit that. They are for the protection of horses and riders, and it is possible in exceptional circumstances for the finishers not to have jumped the same number of fences.