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Canterbury JC 11 July 2020 - R 10 - Chair, Mr S Ching

Created on 13 July 2020

SChing (chair)
Mr B Murray - Licensed Jockey (Class A)
Mr J Oatham - Chief Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Excessive use of the whip

Following the running of Race 10, the Christchurch Casino Rating 77, an information was filed by Chief Stipendiary Steward, Mr J Oatham, against Jockey (Class A), Mr B Murray, alleging that, as the rider of JIN LU in the race, he struck his mount excessively prior to the 100m.

Mr Murray was present at the hearing of the information and had endorsed the information that the breach was admitted, which he confirmed. He also confirmed that he understood the rule he was being charged with.

Rule 638 provides as follows:

(3) A Rider shall not:

(b) strike a horse with a whip in a manner or to an extent which is:

(ii) excessive

The “Guidelines with Respect to Acceptable Use of the Whip” provide as follows:

Flat Races-Prior to the 100-metre mark in a race, official trial or jump out: i (i) The whip should not be used on more than 5 occasions. ii (ii) The whip should not be used in consecutive strides. iii (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.

Mr Oatham gave evidence and showed video replays of the final 400 metres of the race. He pointed out Mr Murray riding JIN LU, positioned back and wide as the field entered the home straight. He said that Mr Murray drew the whip and used it on 10 to 11 occasions, with several consecutive strikes included, prior to the 100m.

Mr Murray did not dispute the number of strikes contended by Mr Oatham.


Mr Murray having admitted the breach; the charge was found proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Oatham told the Committee that Mr Murray had two previous breaches of this rule being firstly on 21 March 2020 where he received a $450 fine for 8 strikes in a Group 3 race. He stated that Mr Murray’s second offence was today where he received a $400 fine in Race 2 for 9 strikes. Mr Oatham stated that the JCA Penalty Guide provides a starting point of a 6-day suspension for a 3rd breach of this rule and also provides a 6 National day starting for a breach where the number of strikes is 10 or more. Mr Oatham stated that after taking all factors into consideration, including the financial implications of Covid 19 and restricted opportunities going forward, that a suspension of 4 to 5 days be considered as penalty in this case.

Mr Murray elected to make no submissions on penalty.

Reasons For Penalty:

In determining penalty, the Committee had regard to the JCA Penalty Guide starting point of a 6 National Day suspension for a 3rd breach and/or 10 strikes or more, within a 12-month period. Aggravating factors were that this was Mr Murray's second offence today, his 3rd in totality over the previous 12 months and that he had used the whip on 11 occasions prior to the 100m. His record we determined was poor.

Taking all factors into consideration, for which the majority were aggravating, as well as the financial implications of Covid 19 and future opportunities, we decided that a meaningful penalty was warranted.

We therefore determined that a 6 National day suspension was an appropriate penalty in this case.


Accordingly, Mr Murray is suspended from the conclusion of racing 25 July up to and including 7 August 2020.


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