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Breeders' Cup 2017

Did Luis Saez Use a Buzzer in the Travers?


Trainer Eric Guillot, who saddled Moreno to a second-place finish in the Travers, has lodged a complaint with the New York State Gaming Commission alleging that jockey Luis Saez, who won the 2013 Travers aboard Will Take Charge, used an electronic “buzzer” during the Travers. 


Gaming commission officials told the Daily Racing Form that they have received the complaint and it is under review.  Saez has denied the accusations through his agent, Richard Depass.


According to the DRF, the investigation is being conducted by the three track stewards as well as the Gaming Commission. Carmine Donofrio, the Gaming Commission steward, confirmed the stewards asked NBC for a tape of the race.


The last time a buzzer was used in a major race was the 1999 Arkansas Derby, where jockey Billy Patin was disqualified and suspended after winning with 30-1 shot Valhol.  Patin was shown to have dropped an object to the ground after the race.  In 2003, seven days after Funny Cide won the Derby, The Miami Herald published a story suggesting that jockey Jose Santos might have carried a device in his right hand during the race. After three days of scrutiny and embarrassment, Santos was cleared by Churchill stewards.


Did Luis Saez have a buzzer in his hand?  You be the judge.  Below are some close-up photos courtesy of EclipseSportswire and the video from NBC.








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Older Comments about Did Luis Saez Use a Buzzer in the Travers?...

the "Blurry device" is the whip. I've lost all respect for Eric Gulliot. What a sore loser
  • Buckpasser · I was just reading a commentary by Horace Wade in his Thoroughbred Record column of August 1, 1964 and in it he speaks of the prevalence of the use of buzzers in horse racing at the turn of the century (1900's). He states that this usage was so widespread that the tracks posted which horses were being ridden with one of the devices. There was a requirement that if a buzzer was used on a horse in one start, his next had to employ the same equipment to be"consistent" as Wade describes. Usage of the devices were prohibited later. I thought this was interesting and wanted to bring this to people's attention as much of early racing in America had a bit of the Wild West anything goes aspect to it. · 1407 days ago
This is so dumb. It is the WHIP. Some people are just sore losers. Will Take Charge has been great all year what makes anyone think the jockey would need a buzzer? On top of that, the jockey would have to be pretty dumb to do it in a nationally televised race in HD. Please. Have some common sense people.
  • rumsponge · I am not sure which version of the video replay you watched, but it is clear that the jockey had something other than the whip holding in his left hand which he can bee seen tucking under the saddle. · 1508 days ago
I really hope this isn't true and that Saez did not cheat. I do find it a bit odd that he is using the whip until shortly before the wire, his colt in all out bid, then starts hand riding right near the end of the race when the colt makes a huge move in the last couple of strides. Also has weird hand movements just after the race. While I hope the allegations are not true, this absolutely should be investigated.
  • annmatt · The people who made the accusation should also be investigated...it's coming out, the trainer of the losing horse has a reputation for being a nut job. If Saez put something under the saddle, what happened to it? Nonsense! As others have pointed out, it would take someone seriously mentally deficient to think he could get away with something like this in front of NBC's HD cameras. If Lukas thought he had done something, Saez would be off riding for him. Good for Saez that he didn't let this keep him from winning the Saranac, and it says lots that Zito, Kieran McLaughlin and other big trainers had him ride for them in a show of confidence. A jockey who wrote a book and admitted to using these devices said it was impossible from his review of the tapes that Saez could have hidden a device. The target for investigation should also extend to Moreno's trainer, and his record splattered all over the front pages. I'm hearing he would not stand up to scrutiny himself. · 1510 days ago
Wow...I don't know what to make of this...I probably watch this replay about 20 times and freeze and span it and every time, I get a different opinion. I hope the sort his out.
Clearly not, he stopped whipping at the end because he was guiding will take charge farther to the outside. And the awkward hand motions were him moving his whip to his other hand. WTC has shown that he can jump into stride. The only thing in his hand is the whip. Lukas would never allow it anyway. Besides its not like he was a crappy horse and then all of a sudden goes and wins the travers, he had a wonderful stretch drives in the jim dandy
He ok.
It's NOT for us to be the judge and jury, think about what this is doing to this young mans reputation, all this gossip.....let the NYRA deal with it
I had a win wager on will take charge, and i'm a big fan of the horse and Lukas but you can clearly see that Saez tucks something under the sadle as soon as he crosses the finish line.
people r jelious n wanna be Luis
I seriously think a rider such as Saez would take a chance in a Nationally Televised event in HD no less. I really don't think it would be worth taking a chance and jeopardizing a jockey's career which those years are short lived anyway.
The kid may have fallen in with a bad crowd, D. Wayne and .tmallios.!
The kid may have fallen in with a bad crowd, D. Wayne and .tmallios.!
NO big time jockey would risk banishment over a single purse, Come on that is their livilhood and their record follows then around. Had a guy here ruled off coujld not ride in Italy once they found out.
Lasix, Buzzers, Whips, Stun Gun,Cigarette lighter,Taser. Jockeys can use anything to give the horse an extra charge , and get an advantage. NO crying in Horse racing.
Didn't we do this year ago? This is ridiculous!
I admit its weird how he is moving his hands around after the race, but they don't appear to be holding anything. I think Moreno's people are just being sore losers.
Looking at the Video and close up pictures,its very hard to tell if he had any device in his hands.I did notice a huge closing move for With Take Charge in the last couple of jumps,so I beleieve it should be investigated and if the jockey did use any device to shock the horse,both the jockey and trainer should be held responsible and the purse redistributed.I'm hoping that the stewards and judges find no wrong doing in the race.I did have this horse on top of all my exotics,so I am hoping my handicapping was correct.
I am not going to pass judgement one way or another until it is investigated more. I don't think that a judgement can be fairly passed just off one video.
That would kiss me off. If he did use the buzzer? I had this super anyhow but that super would've paid hreds more had Moreno
i just think the blinkers off helped will take charge.

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