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Canterbury JC 9 September 2017 - R 5 (instigating a protest) - Chair, Mr R McKenzie

Created on 13 September 2017

RMcKenzie (chair)
D Prastiyou
Licensed Jockey (Class A)
M J McNab
Licensed Jockey (Class A)
Information Number:
Horse Name:
Greenpark Gem
Persons present:
J W Richards
Licensed Trainer (Class A)
A J Brown

Following the running of Race 5, Shearings, More Than Moving Earth Three-Year-Old, an information instigating a protest was filed by Licensed Jockey (Class A), Mr M J McNab, rider of AGE OF FIRE, placed 2nd by the judge, against GREENPARK GEM (D Prastiyou), placed 1st by the judge, alleging “interference over the concluding stages”.

Mr McNab and Mr Prastiyou were both present at the hearing of the information and each indicated that he was representing the connections of AGE OF FIRE and GREENPARK GEM respectively. Also present at the hearing were Mr J W Richards, Licensed Trainer (Class A), co-trainer of AGE OF FIRE, and Mrs A J Brown, Licensed Trainer (Class A), co-trainer of GREENPARK GEM.

Rule 642 provides as follows:

(1) If a placed horse or its Rider causes interference within the meaning of this Rule 642 to another placed horse, and the Judicial Committee is of the opinion that the horse so interfered with would have finished ahead of the first mentioned horse had such interference not occurred, they may place the first mentioned horse immediately after the horse interfered with.

The judge’s official placings for the race were as follows:

1st   9 Greenpark Gem
2nd  5 Age of Fire
3rd 10 Non Blonde
4th   2 Disruption
5th   7 Ajay Tee

The margin between 1st and 2nd was a long head.

Submissions For Decision:

The hearing began by viewing head-on and side-on video replays of the final 200-300 metres of the race. Mr M R Davidson, Stipendiary Steward, pointed out the two runners racing together. GREENPARK GEM, ridden by Mr Prastiyou, was racing on the inside of AGE OF FIRE, ridden by Mr McNab. There were two instances of contact, Mr Davidson said.

Mr McNab said that he had been behind GREENPARK GEM throughout the early part of the race and, near the 200 metres, he had “got up to him” and was “starting to get going”. His mount was a big 3-year-old, having its first start. He said that, as he got up to Mr Prastiyou’s mount and felt that he was going to go past it, the first contact occurred. It was established that this was approximately 150 metres from the finish. He felt that he had the inside horse covered, but it came out and gave his mount “a severe bump” which unbalanced his mount. From that point, his mount “lost his way” and, at the second point of contact, Mr Prastiyou’s mount put pressure on him, he said. That second point of contact was established as being approximately 90 metres from the finishing line. From that point, Mr McNab alleged, Mr Prastiyou’s mount leaned on his mount all the way to the finish and his mount was unable to gallop properly. He submitted that Mr Prastiyou had an obligation to stop riding and straighten his mount. Had he done so, he believed that he would have beaten Mr Prastiyou.

Mr Richards submitted that the first point of contact had cost AGE OF FIRE a little bit of momentum but, at the second point of contact, it had headed the winner but became unbalanced, when it had appeared it was going to get up and win. This was sufficient to make the horse lose concentration. The interference cost the runner up, possibly, a half-length.

Mr Prastiyou said that his filly was having its first raceday start and was wearing a hood. Inside the final 100 metres, the filly put her head up and tried to stop. He submitted that Mr McNab’s mount had every chance to win the race. On the occasion of the second bump, the two runners had come together, he submitted.

Mrs Brown submitted that Mr McNab was able to ride his mount fully to the line and that, in her opinion, GREENPARK GEM was not headed by AGE OF FIRE at any stage. Mr McNab conceded this but responded that he was trying to keep his mount balanced the entire time.

Mr M R Davidson, Stipendiary Steward, said that there had been an early point of contact involving some movement from the inside horse, GREENPARK GEM. Mr McNab kept riding and the second point of contact was the result of movement by both horses but, perhaps, only slightly from Mr McNab’s mount Mr Prastiyou’s mount did lay on Mr McNab’s mount but both horses were unbalanced, Mr Davidson submitted. The two horses were racing tightly and contact was inevitable. Mr Prastiyou’s mount won by a long head. Stewards believed that there were two points of contact – the first the result of movement by Mr Prastiyou’s mount and the Committee needed to determine whether that was sufficient to warrant a change of placings, Mr Davidson said.

Reasons For Decision:

The Committee was first required to determine whether GREENPARK GEM had caused interference to AGE OF FIRE over the concluding stages as alleged in the information. It was accepted by both parties, and agreed by the Committee, that there had been two instances of contact in the final 150 metres of the race. The first, we find, was the result of outwards movement by GREENPARK GEM. Mr McNab described it as a “severe bump” but the Committee saw it as being quite minor. The second point of contact, inside the final 100 metres, we find, was caused by both runners coming together as a result of racing tightly and competitively. Both horses were 3-year-olds and each was having its first start. In our view, it could not be said that GREENPARK GEM had interfered with AGE OF FIRE.

We find that the first point of contact, while possibly amounting to minor interference did not warrant a change of placings as the Committee could not be satisfied that, but for that interference, AGE OF FIRE would have beaten GREENPARK GEM. We do not believe that the former headed the latter at any stage of the run home, despite Mr McNab being able to ride his mount out at all times. We are satisfied that GREENPARK GEM was maintaining its advantage and that AGE OF FIRE was unable to get past it. The winning margin of a long head was significant.


The protest was dismissed.

It was ordered that dividends and stakes be paid in accordance with the judge’s official placings.

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