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29 Nov 2018
Forbury-Park-Tc - R 3

Forbury TC 20 November 2018 - R 3 - Chair, Prof G Hall

Created on 04 December 2018

Committee:
GHall (chair)
Name(s):
Ms S Ottley - Licensed Open Horsewoman
Mr S Renault - Stipendiary Steward
Informant
Mr V Munro - Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
A12458
Plea:
Denied
Charge:
Contravention of the Use of Whip Regulations
Evidence:

Mr Munro, Stipendiary Steward, alleged that Ms Ottley (A R ROSE) used her whip excessively prior to the final 400 metres within cl (f) of the Use of the Whip Regulations in race 3 the PICK 6 STARTS NOW MOBILE PACE.

Clause (f) of the Use of the Whip Regulations provides: “The whip must not be used excessively prior to the final 400 metres.”

Submission For Decision:

Mr Renault, Stipendiary Steward, demonstrated on the videos that the respondent used her whip 14 times before the 400 metres. He said Ms Ottley had been 2 wide towards the rear of the field and had gone 3 wide from the 1600 metres.

Ms Ottley agreed with this.

Mr Munro said from the 1200 metres there were some taps and it was from the 1100 metres to before the 400 metres that was of concern to the Stewards. He said the respondent had been 3 wide without cover from about the 1250 metres when Mr B Williamson broke. Mr Orange on TOUCHE was immediately behind her.

Mr Munro said A R ROSE was the $1.85 favourite. When questioned, he said there had been a veterinarian examination after the race. A report was later produced which stated the horse had had an elevated heart rate and was blowing to a moderate degree. A R ROSE had cooled down normally.

Mr Munro said Ms Ottley was working on A R ROSE for a long time to get the best out of the horse. It was a beaten horse at the 600 metres.

Ms Ottley said she had received a significant check from SHERRY BABY (at the 1300 metres) and had lost momentum. She had had to get her horse going again. She said that many of the strikes were just a flick of the wrist to encourage the horse. It was the red hot favourite and had raced lethargically. She said she was trying to get to one out parked. Mr Telfer, who was already there, would not let her get to that position. She said it was reins with whip 90 per cent of the time. She was trying to do the right thing by the horse and the punter and did not want to stay 3 wide. The strikes were not haymakers. It was a big horse and the cart was a long way back for her and she did not believe all of the strikes were to the horse.

Ms Ottley said she was simply trying to get to the one out position as quickly as she could. She did not believe her whip use was excessive. It was reins and not just whip. There were flicks before the strikes on the bend and those strikes were not hard. She was just encouraging the horse.

Mr Munro summed up by stating there were 14 strikes with the whip to the 600 metres and it was not a good look, irrespective of the force of the strikes.

Ms Ottley disputed that it was not a good look. She said no one would state “Oh my God that girl is flogging the horse”. She was trying her best when driving the hot favourite to get to the parked position.

Reasons For Decision:

Ms Ottley was originally racing 2 wide. She shifted 3 wide about the 1600 metres and briefly had cover. Unfortunately the horse she was following broke and she ended up 3 wide without cover. She then endeavoured for some time to shift to the position of one out without cover but was unable to so. Mr Telfer was driving in the parked position and he was not willing to give this position up to Ms Ottley. The strikes in question were at times with the whip and reins but other times were free of the reins. The Committee accepts Ms Ottley’s submission that these were not haymakers and that she ceased using her whip at the 600 metres when it was evident her horse was not going to get the one out position. It is noted that Ms Ottley was driving the hot favourite and was endeavouring to get the best out of the horse and to her preferred position in the field but was unable to do so.

The Committee accepts that Ms Ottley was niggling at her horse to get it to respond and notes she has described it as lethargic on the night. She said the horse should have been able to do what she asked of it. But 14 strikes between the 1100 metres and the 600 metres is excessive.

Decision:

The charge is proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Munro produced the respondent’s record. Ms Ottley had 638 drives last season, and has had 194 this season. Ms Ottley had a breach of cl (b) of this rule on 10 June last but the reset period applies as she has had 283 drives since that time.

Mr Munro submissions a fine of $300 was appropriate.

Ms Ottley submitted that a lower fine should be imposed as it was just whip with reins.

Reasons For Penalty:

The count for Ms Ottley is 14. The Penalty Guide provides a starting point of a fine of $300 for a breach of r 869(2) and cl (f). It is a misjudgement by Ms Ottley who found herself in out 3 wide with Mr Orange immediately behind her and a horse that was not responding to her urgings to go to the one out position. Ms Ottley is correct when she says the strikes were not forceful and a number were with the reins in hand. Whilst broken up, the strikes were simply too frequent. The breach is thus low end. The starting point is reduced for this reason.

Penalty:

Ms Ottley is fined the sum of $200. The Committee spoke to Ms Ottley advisedly as to the consequences were she to breach the excessive use of the whip rule, whether the strikes were within or outside the 400 metres, in her next 200 drives.

She acknowledged she understood this.

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