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Waikato BOP HRC 15 October 2020 - R 1 - Chair, Mr BJ Scott

Created on 20 October 2020

Rule 869(2)
BScott (chair)
Mr F Phelan - Amateur Horseman
Mr JM Muirhead - Senior Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Excessive use of the Whip

Following the running of the TIM VINCE SUPPORTS HARNESS RACING Mobile Pace an Information was lodged by Senior Stipendiary Steward Mr JM Muirhead against Amateur Driver Mr F Phelan alleging that Mr Phelan used his whip in contravention of the Whip and Rein Regulations when driving EXPRESS PLAY.

Rule 869(2) provides: No driver in any race shall use a whip in a manner in contravention of the Use of Whip Regulations made by the Board.

The latest Whip and Rein Regulations that came into force on the 1st of October 2020 state: A driver may  only apply the whip in a wrist only flicking motion whilst holding a rein in each hand with the tip of the whip pointed forward in an action which does not engage the shoulder.

Mr Phelan was present at the Hearing and advised that he understood the Rule and the new Regulations and that he admitted the breach.

Mr Muirhead demonstrated the incident by use of the race films and showed Mr Phelan over the last 200 metres using the whip in complete contravention of the Regulations in that he was using it with one hand and he used it continuously and also used it 16 times.

Mr Phelan acknowledged that Mr Muirhead had correctly stated the situation and he acknowledged the number of strikes.


The breach is admitted and therefore the charge is proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Muirhead referred to the starting point penalties under the Regulations which provide for a fine of $300.00 but because Mr Phelan is an Amateur Driver he submitted that a fine of $200.00 was appropriate. He also pointed out that Mr Phelan won the race.

Mr Phelan agreed with Mr Muirhead's submissions.

Reasons For Penalty:

The incident is very clearly shown on the race films. Mr Phelan has admitted the breach but that was inevitable given the film evidence.

This is a clear breach of the new Regulations and perhaps should attract a penalty greater than that set out in the Regulations. In dealing with this incident however the Committee takes into account not only the starting point penalty but also the fact that Mr Phelan is an Amateur Driver. The Committee considers that a fine of $200.00 would be appropriate.


Mr Phelan is fined $200.00.

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