Jockey appeals fine for wearing company logo at Travers Stakes
(Reuters) - American Pharoah jockey Victor Espinoza on Wednesday appealed his $15,000 fine for donning a company's logo on his boots during last Saturday's Travers Stakes at Saratoga Race Course, his attorney said.
The New York State Gaming Commission on Monday handed down the fine to the 43-year-old Triple Crown-winning jockey for having the logo of energy drink company Monster Energy on his boots and on his last name on his pants.
American Pharoah, the first horse to sweep the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes since Affirmed in 1978, finished second to Keen Ice in the $1.6 million Travers in Saratoga Springs, New York.
"Victor Espinoza has been nothing but an icon for his sport since the beginning of the Triple Crown season," Espinoza's attorney, Andrew Mollica, told Reuters.
"He's done everything he can to support the sport," Mollica added. "And I think a $15,000 fine under the circumstances is arbitrary and capricious. I've been to the racetrack my whole life and I've never heard of a fine this large."
The gaming commission said Espinoza was fined for "wearing promotional material without permission, after having been specifically instructed not to do so by the stewards."
Under the terms of the appeal, Espinoza is entitled to a hearing before the gaming commission to dispute the fine.
American Pharoah's handlers signed their deal with Monster Energy before the Belmont Stakes in June.
(Reporting by Steve Ginsburg in Washington; Editing by Will Dunham)
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