Meech Interview A Breath Of Fresh Air - Did Linda change the face of racing?
Alex Marsh believes Linda Meech should be commended for her candidness in a recent interview
Linda Meech guided Thought Of That to a last-start win (Getty Images)
Why Linda Meech's Interview Was A Breath Of Fresh Air
On Wednesday Linda Meech bucked the stereotypical ‘give them nothing’ athlete interview and delivered one of the most candid insights delivered by a jockey you will see.
Meech sent Twitter ablaze following her rightful rant on the baffling decision for owners to dump her off Thought Of That in favour of 15-time Group One winner Mark Zahra, despite pairing with the front-runner for a dominant last-start win.
It was a perplexing decision, and Linda didn't hold back.
We want sportspeople to be open, honest and not churn out the same cliched responses every time, but now we chastise one of our own when they finally deliver what we're seeking?
There's no pleasing everyone and there never will be, especially as far as jockeys are concerned, but we are negatively focusing on the "I hope it gets beat" narrative too much.
To those jumping on the "unprofessional" bandwagon are missing the point of the desired outcome for a live interview.
It was a raw and true confession of the hell a professional sportsperson can go through. So what if she didn't fall into some compromised process and churn out the supposed right things?
Above all else, she was genuine.
Why The Owners May Rue Their Decision
If we're going to hand out a trophy for grand acts of strange behaviour than we need to look no further than the antics of managing owner Brae Sokolski.
Rather than leave a successful jockey and horse combination that's won their last two outings by more than ten lengths combined, he put his big boy owners’ hat on, delivered his "expert" opinion as a proven bill payer and pulled rank.
While I think it was a ridiculous call and big decisions like that should be left to the person hired to train the horse, especially when the last appointed hoop has done nothing wrong, he absolutely has that right as an owner.
The handling of the issue was the problem and it was dealt with terribly.
They had to be more on the front foot earlier and had the decency to inform her personally, maybe Meech could have had the opportunity to express her disappointment in person.
Unfortunately he didn't so here we are.
Perhaps Linda would've said what she did anyway but is she the only one hoping Thought Of That gets beat now after all this mess? Spare me.
Well done to Adam McGrath for not imposing himself into the interview and letting the story tell itself without interruption. We need to allow for spontaneity.
We hope this starts a trend among jockeys. Well done to Linda for having the courage to speak out knowing the backlash she would cop.
For a sport often criticised for a lack of transparency Meech delivered an uppercut that could change the face of the industry forever.
More of the same Linda, we loved it.
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