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15 Feb 2020
Oamaru-Hrc - R1

Oamaru HRC 15 February 2020 - R 3 - Chair, Mr P Knowles

Created on 28 February 2020

PKnowles (chair)
Mr R Houghton - Open Horseman
Miss R Haley - Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Contravention of the Use of the Whip Regulations

Mr Houghton was charged by the stewards for a breach of r 869 (2) in that he used his whip excessively when driving out SHE’S TOUGH in race 3. He admitted the charge and appeared at the hearing.

Miss Haley, with the use of the video replays, stated SHE’S TOUGH was handy to the leaders on the home turn. Mr Houghton shifted SHE’S TOUGH wide on the track for a clear run and was observed to use his whip 11 times from about the 250 metres mark to just prior to the finish. His use of the whip was in breach of the rule and the Whip Regulations.

Mr Houghton said he wasn’t counting but clearly had made an error by using his whip short of the post. He felt he was in a good position to finish in a stake bearing position. While he had used his whip 11 times he felt several of those were with an upward motion and were not strikes.


Mr Houghton admitted the charge and it is found proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Miss Haley said Mr Houghton has had 751 lifetime drives and 28 drives this season. He had recently been charged with a similar breach in December last year where he received a six day suspension. He’d had 11 drives since his last breach. This was his fourth breach since October last year. Stewards sought a suspension of 8 days.

Mr Houghton said he was starting to get more drives at this point in the season. He drove mainly in the Canterbury/West Coast districts. He did not seek a deferment. 

Reasons For Penalty:

Mr Houghton’s record for this charge is poor. This is his seventh charge inside 12 months and only 11 drives since his last suspension of six days. We take a starting point of 8 days suspension. While Mr Houghton admitted the charge we do not give any credit.


Mr Houghton is suspended from the end of racing today up to and including Reefton on the 8th March (8 days). 

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