Five-year suspension, $25,000 fine for jockey’s use of “buzzer”

Electrical devices like this one used to stimulate horses are prohibited in racing.
Electrical devices like this one used to stimulate horses are prohibited in racing.

The Blood-Horse reports:

The Texas Racing Commission has suspended jockey Roman Chapa five years and fined him $25,000 after stewards determined he carried an electrical shocking device while riding Quiet Acceleration to victory in a stakes at Sam Houston Race Park.

The suspension is a result of a Feb. 27 stewards’ hearing at which Chapa, 43, was represented by attorneys Paul Vick and Angus McGinty. Chapa has until Thursday, March 5, to appeal and TRC executive director Chuck Trout has the discretion to increase the fine up to $100,000.

The stewards ruled that Chapa violated four rules or racing: possession of contraband, influence of race prohibited, unlawful influence on racing, and inhumane treatment of horse or Greyhound.

Scrutiny of Chapa emerged after a photograph showing the apparent shock device in Chapa’s hand was published on the Sam Houston website and the jockey demanded it be removed. Read more, view photo >>

The Paulick Report states:

Chapa has won with five of seven mounts, with one second and a third-place finish, on the first two programs of the 2015 Sam Houston Race Park meeting. On Friday’s opening night, he rode three horses for Pish, winning twice and finishing second once. One of the winners, Infectious, was a homebred racing for William S. Farish, the former vice chairman of The Jockey Club and owner of Lane’s End Farm.

On Saturday Chapa won races for trainers Steve Asmussen and Karl Broberg, in addition to his victory in the King Stakes for Pish. He finished third with his other mount, also for Pish, who has multiple training titles at the three Texas racetracks: Sam Houston, Lone Star Park and Retama Park. Pish and Chapa have combined for numerous victories together. Read more >>

We find this top comment by Charles Smith to the Paulick Report particularly insightful:

Oh……You mean the same Roman Chapa who was referenced by Scott Blasi, the Scott Blasi associated with the Steve Asmussen barn, the Steve Asmussen who posters at this website think is getting such a raw deal, the guy who the Kentucky commission cleared. Oh yea, he’s a great guy. Steve Asmussen should get in the Horse Racing Hall of Fame the same day Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds and Mark Mc Guire get in the Baseball Hall of Fame.


Jockey Roman Chapa Charged with Felony for Alleged Shock Device Use; by Ashley Palmer;

5 thoughts on “Five-year suspension, $25,000 fine for jockey’s use of “buzzer””

  1. Here is the Thing every Time he gets away with using this Disgusting device he not only jepodizes his own miserable cheaters life,but t he innocent life of the horse he is riding , but every horse and Jockey on that TRACK with him, this is a serious crime and should be treated by the Judge presiding over this case as if his own family member is in that Race…………………………


  2. In this guy’s FIRST year of racing he started pulling this kind of crap – does it say anything that this has been allowed to continue for all this time? Possibly the suspensions aren’t working! Get him away from the race track and far away from horses…Do we wonder why horse racing has such a bad rep?


    1. Horse racing does the slap on the wrist routine for everything it seems, but this looks to be a bit sterner punishment. Looks can be deceiving with this crowd. How long will it last? Will it be overturned? You just never know.

      Why wasn’t he arrested and charged with race rigging? This is what needs to happen. Let true law enforcement deal with these horse abusers and cheaters.


  3. personally, they should just ban him from ever riding again…and up the fine to the maximum…set and example from someone who has broken the law and you will set an example for others to follow…we always go too light and then have to increase…this is cruel behavior, it deserves cruel punishment..


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