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Avondale JC 29 July 2016 - R 2 - Chair, Mr N McCutcheon

Created on 02 August 2016

NMcCutcheon (chair)
Mr A Kuru - Licensed Jockey
Mr A Coles - Stipendiary Steward
Mr M Williamson - Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Excessive use of the whip

Following the running of R2 (Westbrook 2100), Information No.A7598 was filed with the Judicial Committee. It was alleged that Mr Kuru used his whip excessively on LACUSTRE prior to the 200m.

Rule 638(3)(b)(ii) provides:
A rider shall not strike a horse with a whip in a manner or to an extent which is excessive.

Mr Kuru acknowledged to the committee that he understood the Rule and the charge that had been preferred against him. Mr Kuru also confirmed to the committee that he admitted the breach of the Rule.

Mr Coles identified Mr Kuru and his mount on the film replays and said that Mr Kuru had struck his horse with the whip 12 times prior to the 200m. He added that two of the strikes were on the shoulder and that during his whip use he did not give his horse the required respite.

Mr Kuru, for his part, said that his horse did not travel well early and as a result he started to hit it early in the run home and added that he had hit it too many times.

In answer to a question from the committee, Mr Kuru confirmed that he was aware of the whip guidelines. Mr Kuru added that his horse may not have won the race if he had not hit it so many times early in the run home as it was not travelling well and only got going when he hit it.


Due to the breach being admitted it was found to be proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Williamson said that Mr Kuru had a clear record over the last 12 months, had admitted the breach, was a jumps jockey with limited earning capacity and submitted that a fine of around $200 would suffice.

Mr Kuru confirmed that he had a clear record and said that he only rides for about 6 months of the year. He said that he realised that he had used the whip too much early in the run home but may not have won without doing it.

Reasons For Penalty:

Mitigating factors were admission of the breach, clear record and limited opportunities for jumping jockeys. An aggravating factor was that Mr Kuru stated that he may not have won the race with less whip use.

In the committee’s view, some of the strikes applied to LACUSTRE were with significant force. The committee noted that LACUSTRE won the race convincingly and was extending the margin over the final stages.

The committee was mindful of the JCA starting point of $500 for a first breach of the whip rule and believed that a fine near that figure would be an appropriate penalty.


Mr Kuru was fined $400.

The committee advised Mr Kuru that if he breached the whip rule again within a 6-month period, the JCA penalty guidelines provide for a suspension to be imposed.

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