Mike Smith not allowed ride at Lingfield

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Updated: May 24, 2011
Legendary American jockey Mike Smith has to give up his rides at Lingfield on Tuesday as a result of visa problems.

Smith, who is best known for his association with Zenyatta, is in England to ride Wesley Ward’s Royal Ascot contender Gentlemans Code, in a maiden at Folkestone on Thursday.

However, several British trainers took the opportunity to book Smith and he had five booked rides at Lingfield.

International Racing Bureau director of racecourse services Adrian Beaumont said:

“Unfortunately he won’t be going to Lingfield. We had a call from the UK Border Agency this morning and they told us riding at Lingfield would break the terms of his visa. They have basically said Lingfield was not part of the same event as Folkestone.

“He has really come over to ride the American horse at Folkestone, so he is not allowed to go to Lingfield. He doesn’t want to jeopardise any future visits to the UK. He’ll ride at Folkestone on Thursday and goes back to America on Friday. He’ll then hopefully be back for Royal Ascot.”

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