A JOCKEY has been suspended from horseracing after giving a positive sample for what is understood to be cocaine.

Callum Rodriguez tested positive for a banned substance when riding at Southwell on February 27.

The rider, who won the 2017 Ebor on Nakeeta and is based in Darlington with trainer Michael Dods, has been in good form during the winter's all-weather championships.

In a statement issued by the Professional Jockeys Association, Mr Rodriguez said: "Following my recent mistake, I would like to sincerely apologise to all the owners and trainers I have ridden for, in particular Mr Dods and everyone at Denton Hall, as well as my fellow jockeys in the weighing room.

"My one-off action was completely out of character and one that I deeply regret.

“My plan is to continue riding work for Michael Dods and other connections whilst I am away from race riding."

The Northern Echo:

The British Horseracing Authority has confirmed Rodriguez would be suspended while an investigation was ongoing.

Michael Dods has said he will help the rider make up for his mistake.

Mr Dods said: "We are extremely disappointed with Callum.

“As a yard we operate a strict no-tolerance policy to drug taking, and each and every one of our staff are well aware of their responsibilities.

"Through his actions Callum has not only let himself down, he has also let down every member of our team, as well as owners and other trainers."

Mr Rodriguez has ridden 42 winners for Mr Dods since 2016.

The trainer added: “We are fully supportive of the BHA’s disciplinary process and Callum will abide by whatever sanctions are eventually imposed.

"Callum is deeply remorseful for his actions and insists this was a one-off mistake.

“As his employer, we intend to work with him to help him atone for his error, along with the Professional Jockeys Association.

"Callum will now have some time in which to reflect on what he has done. He now has to work hard and prove to everyone that he deserves another chance."