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Counties RC 11 April 2021 – R 6 – Chair, Mr A Smith

Created on 13 April 2021

Committee:
ASmith (chair)
Name(s):
Mr C Jones – Apprentice Rider of JUNIOR
Mr N Tiley – Assisting Mr Jones
Ms L Selvakumaran – Stipendiary Steward
Informant
Mr A Coles –Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
A13846
Plea:
Admitted
Charge:
Excessive use of the whip
Evidence:

This charge arises from the running of Race 6, the Fasttrack $5k. An Information was filed pursuant to Rule 638 (3)(b)(ii) by the Informant, Mr Coles, alleging that Apprentice Rider Mr C Jones used his whip excessively when riding JUNIOR prior to the 100 metres.

Mr Jones was assisted at the hearing by his employer, Licensed Trainer Mr N Tiley. Mr Jones said that he understood the Rule and confirmed that he admitted the breach.

Rule 638(3)(b)(ii) provides:

A Rider shall not strike a horse with a whip in a manner or to an extent which is:

(i) unnecessary, or

(ii) excessive, or

(iii) improper

Without affecting the generality of Rule 638(3)(b), a rider may be penalised if their whip use is outside of the following guidelines:

Flat Races

Prior to the 100-metre mark in a race, official trial or jump out:

(i) The whip should not be used on more than 5 occasions.

(ii) The whip should not be used in consecutive strides.

(iii) The rider may at their discretion use the whip with a slapping motion down the shoulder, with the whip hand remaining on the reins.

In the final 100 metres, the whip may be used at the Rider’s discretion.

Using available race film footage Ms Selvakumaran demonstrated the breach. She identified Mr Jones’ mount, JUNIOR, shortly after entering the home straight. She said that between the straight entrance to the 100-metre mark Mr Jones struck his mount 8 times, with a 9th strike occuring right on the 100m mark.

In response Mr Jones said that he agreed with the number of strikes. On his behalf, Mr Tiley said it was a straight forward breach of the whip Rule.

Decision:

As Mr Jones admitted the breach the Committee found the charge proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Coles said that Mr Jones had breached the whip Rule on two previous occasions in the last 6 months.

The Committee advised Mr Jones that the starting point for a 3rd breach of the whip Rules was a $2000 fine and a 2 day suspension, however on occasions, and in some circumstances, Committees had looked to increase the suspension period and reduce the fine amount, particularly for Apprentice Jockeys or those Riders that had limited opportunities.

Mr Tiley, assisting Mr Jones, said that he thought an Apprentice Jockey would take more notice of a reduced fine and increased suspension as Apprentices' funds were held in trust and the suspension was a more immediate penalty and one from which they were more likely to learn from.

Mr Jones agreed with Mr Tiley’s comments.

Reasons For Penalty:

The Committee considered all the evidence and submissions and took particular note of the number and frequency of strikes as well as the force used. In that regard we confirmed the number of strikes as 8 prior to the 100m and noted that most were “backhanders”. They were not overly forceful nor were they continuous.

The Committee was particularly interested in Mr Tiley’s comments in relation to Apprentice Riders and the starting point for a 3rd whip breach, which was factored into the decision on what an appropriate penalty should look like.

Penalty:

Mr Jones' license to ride in races was suspended from close of racing on the 11th of April 2021 until close of racing on 17th April 2021 (4 National days).  In addition Mr Jones was fined $500.

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