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Forbury Park TC 19 April 2018 - R 2 (heard 20 April 2018 at Addington) - Chair, Mr R McKenzie



507(1)

RACEDAY JUDICIAL COMMITTEE DECISION

Informant: S P Renault, Stipendiary Steward

Defendant: B D J Munro, Licensed Junior Horseman

Information No: A10177

Meeting: Forbury Park Trotting Club

Date: 19 April 2018 (heard 20 April 2018 at Addington)

Venue: Forbury Park Raceway, Dunedin

Race: 2

Rule No: 507 (1)

Judicial Committee: R G McKenzie, Chairman – A J Smith, Committee Member

Plea: Admitted

FACTS:

Information No. A10177 was filed by Stipendiary Steward, Mr S P Renault, against Licensed Junior Horseman, Mr B D J Munro, alleging that Mr Munro, as the notified driver for BULLYS PRINCESS in Race 2, Park & Event Function Centre Mobile Pace, “broke a driving engagement to drive BULLYS PRINCESS”.

Mr Munro did not attend the meeting. The information was filed with the Judicial Committee on racenight and adjourned. It was served on Mr Munro at the meeting of New Zealand Metropolitan TC at Addington Raceway on 20 April 2018. The information was heard at that meeting.

Mr Munro had signed the Statement by the Respondent on the information form indicating that he admitted the breach. He was present at the hearing of the information and confirmed that he understood the Rule and that he admitted the breach.

SUBMISSION(S):

Mr Wallis, Stipendiary Steward, appearing on behalf of Mr Renault, said that Mr Munro was down to drive BULLYS PRINCESS, trained by Mr L V Sinnamon, in Race 2 at the Forbury Park meeting on 19 April. At 3.00pm on the day before the meeting, Mr Munro broke the driving engagement, having arranged for Junior Driver, Mr M J Anderson, to take the drive.

Mr Munro said that he had looked at the nominations on Monday, anticipating a couple of drives in the races for junior drivers at the meeting but did not get a drive in either event. When he later looked at the fields for the meeting on Wednesday, he saw his name down to drive BULLYS PRINCESS in Race 3. He approached Mr Anderson to ask him to take the drive and then attempted on a couple of occasions, unsuccessfully, to contact Mr Sinnamon. He telephoned Southern Harness to advise that he would not be attending the meeting but that Mr Anderson was available to take the drive. He subsequently spoke to Mr Sinnamon who was prepared to release him. Mr Munro said that it was not worthwhile his travelling to the meeting for one drive.

DECISION:

Mr Munro having admitted the breach, the charge was found proved.

PENALTY SUBMISSIONS:

Mr Wallis referred to a recent case of a breach of the same Rule (N Purdon, February 2018). Mr Purdon had been fined the sum of $250. Mr Wallis said that Stewards were submitting that $250 was an appropriate fine in this case.

Mr Munro told the Committee that he preferred a fine to a suspension by way of penalty.

PENALTY REASONS:

The Committee noted that the Penalty Guide starting point for a breach of the Rule is a 4-drives suspension or a $200 fine.

The Committee noted Mr Wallis’ submission referring to the fine in the Purdon case. However, the Committee was not aware of the circumstances of that case, although it noted that the fine imposed exceeded the Penalty Guide starting point.

Looking at the case before us, the Committee took the starting point of a $200 fine. A suspension was not appropriate. We could find no aggravating factors. Mr Munro had taken steps at an early stage to find a replacement driver and to inform the Club and the horse’s trainer.

Mitigating factors were Mr Munro’s admission of the breach and his record, which we understood to be clear. However, those factors are unexceptional and did not warrant a discount from the Penalty Guide starting point in this instance.

PENALTY DECISION:

Mr Munro is fined the sum of $200.

R G McKenzie          A J Smith

CHAIRMAN              COMMITTEE MEMBER

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