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Counties RC 20 June 2018 - R 7 - Chair, Mr A Dooley

Created on 21 June 2018

ADooley (chair)
Mr A Calder - Class A Rider
Mr M Williamson - Senior Stipendiary Steward
Mr A Coles - Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Excessive use of whip

Following the running of race 7, Vivo Hair & Beauty 1600, an Information was filed pursuant to Rule 638 (3)(b)(ii). The Informant, Mr Coles, alleged that Mr Calder used his whip excessively prior to the 100 metres.

Mr Calder acknowledged that he understood the Rule and confirmed he admitted the breach.

Rule 638(3)(b)(ii) provides: A Rider shall not:

(ii) strike a horse with a whip in a manner or to an extent which is excessive

The “Guidelines With Respect to Acceptable Use of the Whip” provides:

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

Inside the final 600 metres of any Race, official trial or jump-out a horse may be struck with the drawn whip up to five times after which the rider must cease their use of the whip for a minimum of five strides before striking the horse again with the drawn whip, with this restriction to apply prior to the final 100 metres. The whip may then be used at the rider’s discretion until the winning post is reached.

Prior to the final 600 metres of a race, official trial or jump-out the use of the drawn whip is acceptable if used in moderation and not continually.

Mr Williamson demonstrated the incident using the available video footage. He identified Mr Calder and showed that he struck his mount 9 times prior to the 100 metres. He said that Mr Calder paused his use of the whip but not for the minimum 5 strides.

Mr Calder accepted Mr Williamson’s interpretation of the incident and had nothing further to add.


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

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Coles said that Mr Calder had a clear record under this Rule and recommended that a $300 fine be imposed.

Mr Calder submitted that he had earned the money and he would prefer a suspension rather than a fine.

In response to a question from the Committee, Mr Calder was unable to provide any evidence that he was not in a financial position to pay a fine.

Reasons For Penalty:

The Committee carefully considered all the evidence and submissions presented.

The JCA Penalty Guide starting point for a 1st breach of excessive use of the whip is a $300 fine.

The Committee did consider Mr Calder’s submission regarding a suspension rather than a fine. In our opinion there were no compelling reasons to deviate from the JCA Penalty Guide starting point.

It was clear when reviewing the incident that the 9 strikes were not forceful and there were no aggravating factors.

The mitigating factors were not exceptional therefore they were not addressed in penalty.


Accordingly, Mr Calder was fined $300.

In conclusion the Committee advised Mr Calder the starting points for a 2nd and 3rd breach of the whip Rule within a 12 month period.

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