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Appeal B May v RIU - Decision of Appeals Tribunal dated 19 December 2020 - Chair, Mr M McKechnie

Created on 21 December 2020

BEFORE AN APPEALS TRIBUNAL

OF THE JUDICIAL CONTROL AUTHORITY

UNDER THE RACING ACT 2003

IN THE MATTER OF New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Rules

BETWEEN BRANDON MAY

APPELLANT

AND THE RACING INTEGRITY UNIT (RIU)

RESPONDENT

Appeals Tribunal: Mr Murray McKechnie, Chairman & Mr Stewart Ching

Present: Mr Brandon May, Class A Jockey

Mr Graeme Rogerson, Licensed Trainer

Mr Matthew Williamson, Stipendiary Steward

Mr Alan Coles, Stipendiary Steward

DECISION OF APPEALS TRIBUNAL

DATED THIS 19th DAY OF DECEMBER 2020

1. INTRODUCTION

1.1 This is an appeal by Mr Brandon May in respect of a suspension imposed on 2 December 2020 at the Rotorua race meeting. Mr May was on the day suspended for a period of 12 national riding days commencing on that day and concluding at the completion of racing on 20 December.

2. CIRCUMSTANCES AROUND THE IMPOSITION OF PENALTY

2.1 Mr May indicated to the presiding JCA officer that he wished the suspension to commence immediately. Mr May was a declared rider for a horse that was to race on the following Saturday. That horse was on the ballot. There was discussion with Mr Rogerson, Mr May’s employer who was present at the race meeting and the Stipendiary Stewards and it was agreed that the suspension could start immediately.

2.2 Subsequently it was drawn to the attention of the JCA that Mr May had been declared as a rider for a horse on the following Saturday and as a result the presiding JCA officer issued a second decision dated 5 December. That decision expressly records that the race meetings on 3, 4 and 5 December were not taken into account. In the result the 12 national riding days were to commence at Hastings on 9 December and conclude at New Plymouth on 27 December.

2.3 It is common ground here today that the suspension did as a matter of fact commence on 2 December and that Mr May has not ridden since that time. In those circumstances the 12 days commenced on 2 December and accordingly the decision of 5 December has extended the period of suspension beyond the 12 day period which was considered appropriate. If the correct date of 2 December is adopted then the last three days of the suspension set out in the decision of 5 December will not now have application. Those are the meetings at Matamata on 23 December, Ellerslie on 26 December and New Plymouth on 27 December. It follows from what has been said that the current suspension, effectively in place since 2 December, will conclude following racing at Gore on 20 December.

2.4 The Tribunal sought submissions on the question of costs. Mr Rogerson had some criticism of the way this was handled by the Stewards on 2 December. The Tribunal for its part accepts that Mr Williamson was making his best endeavours to get this resolved in the way that Mr May wished – that is to say that the suspension start immediately. There is plainly some difficulty in the way Rule 1106(2)(a) has been applied in relation to horses that have been declared for upcoming race meetings and particularly when, as here the horse or horses may be on the ballot.

2.5 The persons who have been present today have been sensible and co-operative in getting this sorted out and in those circumstances there will not be any order for costs in favour of any of the parties, nor will there be a costs order in favour of the JCA as the situation which has arisen is something for which the JCA must bear some measure of responsibility.

DATED this 19th day of December 2020

Murray McKechnie

Chairman

Signed pursuant to 1007(5)

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