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Northern Southland TC 6 October 2018 - R 1 - Chair, Mr P Knowles

Created on 15 October 2018

PKnowles (chair)
Mr M Williamson - Open Horseman
Mr V Munro - Stipendiary Steward
Mr S W Wallis - Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Careless Driving

Following the running of race 1 the Net Ten EOM At Macca Lodge Pace Stewards charged Mr Matthew Williamson with a breach of r869 (3) (b) – careless driving – in that “…he drove carelessly near the 200 metres by improving into a position when insufficient room existed resulting in checks to SHERRY BABY and GOMEO DENARIO.” 

Rule 869 (3) (b) reads:

No horseman in any race shall drive:


Mr Williamson did not admit the breach and appeared at the hearing.

Mr Wallis, using the available videos, pointed out the relevant positions of Mr M Williamson and the affected horses prior to the incident. He stated Mr M Williamson (ROCKIN ROD) was trailing the leader SHERRY BABY (B Williamson) as the field approached the 400 metre mark. He said soon after Mr Williamson shifted ROCKIN ROD into the one-out position behind FLOGGING MOLLY (N Williamson). GOMEO DENARIO (B Barclay) which was trailing ROCKIN ROD three back on the pole line, moved forward to behind SHERRY BABY. On entering the home straight he alleged Mr M Williamson shifted ROCKIN ROD inwards and attempted to improve into a gap where there was insufficient room. He said the result was interference to SHERRY BABY and GOMEO DENARIO, with both locking wheels and losing their chances.

Submission For Decision:

Mr Munro stated that the gap was not big enough for ROCKIN ROD. This forced Mr B Williamson to take a hold of SHERRY BABY and withdraw his position with the resulting interference to GOMEO DENARIO. He said Mr B Williamson told the stewards he had to take evasive action late when the outside runner shifted inwards. He did not believe the inwards movement from Mr Larsen (LAST HARAH) was a factor.

Mr M Williamson stated he had shifted inwards immediately on entering the home straight. He said he had enough room as he anticipated the leader SHERRY BABY was under pressure and giving ground. He said once he was committed to the inside movement there was pressure from his outside which forced him inwards towards SHERRY BABY. He believed it was Mr Larsen wider out on LAST HARAH which had contributed to his inwards movement.

Reasons For Decision:

Our interpretation of the incident differs to that of the stewards. When the field entered the home straight we see SHERRY BABY (B Williamson), which was under pressure, shifting inwards into the passing lane. We also found that both ROCKIN ROD (M Williamson) and GOMEO DENARIO (B Barclay) made inwards movements from trailing positions at the same time. However, at no time from that point until the interference occurred, did GOMEO DENARIO have clear racing room in the passing lane. We also found that on entering the home straight FLOGGING MOLLY (N Williamson), which was the leading horse in the home straight, drifted inwards a half cart and in doing so dictated the line of ROCKIN ROD which was forced inwards. Mr N Williamson attempted to correct his inwards shift but found Mr Larsen (LAST HARAH) had established himself in the gap between FLOGGING MOLLY and MATINEE IDOL (P Hunter) on its outside. We find no fault of Mr Larsen who took advantage of a gap that presented itself between runners. The shifting of more than one horse contributed to the general tightening on inside horses which led to the interference.

Mr M Williamson was charged with causing interference (careless driving) to two other runners by attempting to improve his position in the home straight when there was insufficient room. We have to be satisfied, on the balance of probabilities, that Mr Williamson’s actions were solely at fault and interference resulted.


In this instance we are not satisfied and the charge is dismissed.

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