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08 Feb 2019
Auckland-Tc - R10

Auckland TC 8 February 2019 - R 10 – Chair, Mr G Jones

Created on 11 February 2019

GJones (chair)
Mr T Mitchell - Licensed Open Horseman
Mr J Muirhead – Senior Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Contravention of Whip Regulations

This charge arises from the running of Race 10, the Breckon Farms Young Guns Series (Heat 4) Mobile Pace 1700. An Information was filed by Senior Stipendiary Steward Mr J Muirhead alleging Licensed Open Horseman; Mr T Mitchell breached Rule 869(2)(a) in that he used his whip driving EAGLE WATCH over the final 400 metres on more occasions than permitted by the use of whip regulations.

Rule 869(2)(a) provides that:

(2) No horseman shall during any race:-

(a) Use his whip in an unnecessary, excessive or improper manner.

The Use of the Whip Regulations provides that:

-The whip shall not be used more than 10 times in the last 400m of a race, this is inclusive of “backhanders” and the use applies to the horse, harness and/or sulky.

-At no stage of a race will Stewards permit continuous use of the whip. Horseman must show distinct pauses between the whip being used.

Mr Mitchell admitted the breach and indicated that he did not wish to be present at the hearing and endorsed the information accordingly.

Senior Stipendiary Steward Mr Muirhead used available video footage to demonstrate the breach. He identified that inside the concluding 400 metres of the race, EAGLE WATCH (Mr Mitchell) was racing near the rear of the field. He said that from the straight entrance to the winning post Mr Mitchell used his whip 11 times.

As Mr Mitchell did not attend the hearing, he did not offer an explanation.


The charge is admitted and therefore proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Muirhead advised that Mr Mitchell has a clear record under the whip rule. He did not identify any aggravating factors and submitted that a $200 fine would be an appropriate penalty.

Reasons For Penalty:

The JCA Penalty Guide for a 1st breach of this rule establishes starting points, on a graduated scale, based on the number of strikes.

These are as follows:

11 - 13 $200
14 - 16 $300
17 and over $500

The Committee has reviewed the video footage of the final 400 meters of the race. It is clear that Mr Mitchell used his whip 11 times. The force used was moderate. There are no aggravating factors and accordingly we have no compelling reasons to deviate from the $200 starting point. 


We fine Mr Mitchell sum of $200. 

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