Australia’s biggest racing stable is fighting a Racing Victoria decision that will leave trainer Ciaron Maher in an impossible position to challenge for state and metropolitan premierships.

RV has ruled that any winners Maher trains from January 28 until the end of the racing season on July 31 will not be added to the tally he accumulated in a partnership with David Eustace.

The partnership was dissolved after racing on Saturday with Eustace quitting Australian racing to start a solo training career in Hong Kong.

The pair head the national premiership with 164 winners while in Victoria they have a 19-win advantage over the Hayes brothers’ Lindsay Park operation at metropolitan level and lead the same stable by 22 victories for state honours.

While the season wins before Sunday appear to have transferred the Maher’s name on Racing Australia’s, they won’t be counted by RV.

Ciaron Maher Racing chief executive Ben Sellenger said the RV decision should be overturned in the interests of recognising and rewarding the best stable,

“I’m not sure it is fair … my position would be it shows a bit of a misunderstanding about how racing stables operate and how we would operate moving forward,” he told RSN.

“I mean essentially with David leaving our organisation as of midnight last Saturday there is otherwise a complete continuity of our operations.

“Our bloodstock doesn’t change, we’ve got 280 other staff who continue to train … everything we’ve sort of grown continues on.

“And I think it’s that continuity that would push for the argument that we should just continue on as Ciaron Maher Racing.”

A stable relationship - the statistics behind the Maher-Eustace years
David Eustace has bowed out of Australian racing after 5-1/2 seasons as one of half of a partnership that took training racehorses to a new level.

As it stands, Sellenger said any premiership win over the stable this season would most likely amount to an empty victory.

“You set up these trainers’ championships and premierships and they are meant to reflect the most successful stable over that racing calendar year,” he said.

“I can’t speak on behalf of (a stable) like the Hayes team and whilst I’m sure they would like to win the Victorian trainers’ championship, I sense it would be a little bit more hollow.

“And this isn’t to say they can’t overthrow us anyway. They’re only a little bit behind and they are training amazingly at the moment.”

My position would be it shows a bit of a misunderstanding about how racing stables operate and how we would operate moving forward” - Ciaron Maher Racing boss Ben Sellenger

Sellenger has also approached Racing NSW to see if it has plans to adjust city and state premierships after Eustace’s departure.

“They’re making some inquiries about how they will deal with the situation. They haven’t formally put out a notice in the same way Racing Victoria did on Friday,” he said.

“In fairness to Racing Victoria we have been in discussions with them and they are at the moment considering their position and allowing us to make some submissions as to why we feel it would be more equitable for any wins to continue to count towards Ciaron Maher.

“Their approach is to do some more detailed scenario modelling … ‘what ifs’.

“So in this circumstance, David is going to Hong Kong.

“So for mine, it’s a cut-and-dried (situation). This trainer is going to an external jurisdiction and therefore it makes the considerations a lot easier.”