You are here: Home / Race Days / Auckland TC - 6 August 2020 / Auckland TC 6 August 2020 – R 7 – Chair, Mr G Jones

Auckland TC 6 August 2020 – R 7 – Chair, Mr G Jones

Created on 07 August 2020

Rules:
869(3)(b)
Committee:
GJones (chair)
Name(s):
Mr L Whittaker (J) - driver of ALL YOURS
Mr A Poutama – Open Horseman assisting Mr Whittaker
Informant
Mr S Mulcay - Senior Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
A12964
Plea:
Admitted
Charge:
Careless driving
Evidence:

Following the running of Race 7, the Woodland Stud Mobile Pace 2200m, an information was filed by Senior Stipendiary Steward Mr Mulcay alleging Junior Horseman Mr Whittaker, breached Rule 869 (3)(b)  “in that he drove carelessly near the 500m by contacting the sulky wheel of TOMMY TUKAA (T Cameron) resulting in that runner receiving a punctured sulky tyre with ALL YOURS breaking and losing its chance”.

Mr Whittaker endorsed the Information ‘I do admit the breach of the rule’. At the commencement of the hearing he confirmed his plea and that he understood the rule and the nature of the charge. He was assisted at the hearing by Mr Poutama.

Rule 869 (3)(b) provides:

No horseman in any race shall drive carelessly.

Using available video footage Mr Mulcay identified the horses involved in the incident namely, ALL YOURS (L Whittaker), TOMMY TUKAA (T Cameron) and MAGILLIGAN POINT (J Stormont). Mr Mulcay said that at the 600-metre mark ALL YOURS was racing near the rear of the field in second to last place and Mr Whittaker was looking to improve into a 3-wide position. Approaching the 500 metres, ALL YOURS went into a break after making contact with the near side sulky wheel of TOMMY TUKAA. This occurred whilst Mr Whittaker attempted to shift MAGILLIGAN POINT down from its rightful 3-wide position. As a consequence, the tyre on TOMMY TUKAA’S sulky wheel punctured costing that runner all chance of finishing in a better position. ALL YOURS also lost all chance.

In response Mr Whittaker told the Committee he freely acknowledged the breach, adding that it was a bad drive on his part and the incident should not have happened. Mr Poutama had nothing to add.

Decision:

Pursuant to Rule 1111(1)(d) as Mr Whittaker admitted the breach the charge is proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Mulcay submitted that Mr Whittaker has a good record and he should be given credit for admitting the breach at the first opportunity. He said that an aggravating factor was that two horses had their chances extinguished as a result of the breach. Notwithstanding, he said that Stewards would not oppose a fine on this occasion.

Mr Whittaker sought a 7-day deferment, should a suspension be imposed. He said that he generally has 4 drives per night and would prefer a fine. He added that he has been driving for over 3 years and has a good record under the rule.

Reasons For Penalty:

The JCA Penalty Guide provides a starting point of a 6-drive suspension or a $300 fine for a breach of this rule. The Committee has noted that similar recent breaches have incurred penalties ranging from fines between $200 to $500 and limited number of 2 to 3-day suspensions.

After taking into account the submissions and noting the resultant impact on the affected runner (TOMMY TUKAA), the level of carelessness was assessed to be mid-range.  An aggravating factor being that the chances of both ALL YOURS and TOMMY TUKAA were affected by the incident.

In consideration of a suspension versus a fine, the Committee was mindful that due to the limited race meetings available in the northern region this month, a suspension, if imposed, after granting a 7-day deferment, would effectively mean that Mr Whittaker would be suspended for the remainder of the month.  On that basis when balancing this against the circumstances of the breach,  his good record and admission, a fine was deemed to be an appropriate penalty on this occasion. 

Penalty:

Accordingly, Mr Whittaker was fined the sum of $300. 

Document Actions