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R Rotorua 20 October 2018 - R 3 - Chair, Mr A Dooley

Created on 23 October 2018

ADooley (chair)
Ms T Thornton - Rider of PATSY'S LASS
Mr J Oatham - Chief Stipendiary Steward
Mr M Williamson - Senior Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Careless Riding

Following the running of race 3, NZB Insurance Pearl Series Race, an Information was filed pursuant to Rule 638(1)(d). The Informant, Mr Williamson, alleged that Ms Thornton permitted her mount PATSY’S LASS to shift outwards when not sufficiently clear crowding and hampering WALKIN’ BY near the 150 metres.

Ms Thornton said that she understood the Rule and confirmed her admission of the breach.

Rule 638(1) (d) provides: A Rider shall not ride a horse in a manner which the Judicial Committee considers to be careless.

Mr Oatham demonstrated the incident using the available video footage. He paused the film and showed that there was no run available for PATSY’S LASS at the 150 metres when Ms Thornton angled her mount outwards. As a result WALKIN’ BY was crowded and checked. He said when Ms Thornton shifted out she was only ¾ of a length clear of WALKIN’ BY.

Ms Thornton accepted Mr Oatham’s interpretation of the incident and had nothing to add.


As Ms Thornton admitted the breach the Committee found the charge proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Williamson produced Ms Thornton’s record which showed 1 previous breach under this Rule in the last 12 months. He described the level of carelessness as low range and a suspension in line with that would be appropriate.

Ms Thornton advised that she had firm commitments up to and including 27 October and any proposed suspension could start after that date.

Reasons For Penalty:

The Committee carefully considered all the evidence and submissions presented.

When reviewing the video footage the Committee observed that Ms Thornton angled her mount out when only ¾ of a length clear of WALKIN’ BY. As a consequence that runner was crowded and checked. The Committee deemed the level of carelessness displayed by Ms Thornton was low range.

The JCA Penalty Guide starting point for low range carelessness is 6 national riding days.

There were no aggravating factors.

The mitigating factors were Ms Thornton’s admission of the breach and her good record. For these collective factors Ms Thornton was afforded a 1 day reduction in penalty.

After taking into account all the above factors the Committee considered that an appropriate suspension was 5 days.


The Committee granted a deferment to Ms Thornton’s suspension pursuant to Rule 1106(2).

Accordingly, Ms Thornton had her license to ride in races suspended for a period to commence after racing on 27 October and conclude after racing on 4 November 2018.


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