Veitch Moves Forward With Appeal

Former Kentucky Chief Steward challenging decision that upheld a one-year suspension.

An attorney for John Veitch said the former Kentucky Chief Steward is appealing a circuit court decision that upheld Veitch's one-year suspension over his handling of circumstances surrounding the performance Life At Ten in the 2010 Breeders’ Cup Ladies Classic (gr. I) at Churchill Downs.

In September a Franklin Ky. Circuit Court judge ruled in favor of the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission’s decision to suspend Veitch for 12 months. That suspension has made it difficult for Veitch to land a position in other racing jurisdictions.

Veitch’s attorney, Tom Miller, said the appeal includes two distinct challenges. They include state constitutional issues in the revocation of the racing license and questions surrounding the former steward's dismissal last November by Public Protection Cabinet secretary Robert Vance.

Miller said Veitch was fired "without cause," but that as a classified employee he could only be discharged with cause. Miller also argues that the 67-year-old Veitch was fired, in part, because he pursued his due process in the Life At Ten case. Other issues raised in the appeal include the timing of the dismissal and age discrimination.

Life At Ten, one of the top choices in the Ladies Classic, struggled around the track after her jockey, John Velazquez, raised concerns in an ESPN interview about how the filly was warming up before the race. The KHRC launched a full investigation into the matter, after which Veitch was fired.