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R Tauranga 5 April 2021 – R 3 – Chair, Mr A Smith

Created on 08 April 2021

Rules:
638(1)(d)
Committee:
ASmith (chair)
BScott
Name(s):
Miss B Rogerson rider of SO CHARMING
M Williamson senior Stipendiary Steward
G Rogerson - Licensed Trainer assisting Miss Rogerson
Ms T Thornton - rider of JUST KATE
Mr V Colgan - Rider of ARONOV
Mr W Pinn - Rider of MINI MYSTIC
Informant
Mr B Jones - Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
A14030
Plea:
Denied
Charge:
Careless Riding
Evidence:

This is a defended hearing arising from the running of Race 3, the Fresh Market Gate Pa shopping centre. Stipendiary Steward, Mr Jones filed an Information pursuant to Rule 638(1)(d) alleging the Rider of SO CHARMING (B Rogerson),” permitted her mount to shift in when insufficiently clear of ARONOV which was dictated in crowding MINI MYSTIC onto JUST KATE which was checked.

Miss Rogerson acknowledged she understood the Rule and confirmed she wished to defend the breach, with the assistance of her Employer Mr G Rogerson.

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

Submission For Decision:

Using the available race films Stipendiary Steward, M Williamson demonstrated the incident and identified the horses and Riders concerned; SO CHARMING (B Rogerson), ARONOV (V Colgan), MINI MYSTIC (W Pinn) and JUST KATE (T Thornton).

Mr Jones, opened the hearing by advising that the Stipendiary Stewards would be calling the Riders of the horses named in the Information as witnesses.

Mr Williamson identified on the video films the horses named in the Information. He said that approximately 100m after the start JUST KATE was racing in a loose 3 wide position with, MINI MYSTIC to its outer. ARONOV was racing outside of these horses, and on the outside of all of them was SO CHARMING (B Rogerson). Mr Williamson said that there was some general tightening between JUST KATE and MINI MYSTIC but this had no significance to the charge. After this “small interference” Mr Williamson identified that Mr Colgan on his mount ARONOV, turned his horse's head outwards in an attempt to relieve pressure from the horses on his inside.

Mr Williamson rolled the film forward and said soon after SO CHARMING commenced to dictate ARONOV in slightly. At this point Mr Williamson brought up the side on video and wanted to be “ very clear” with the Committee that the video was “ not a true side on” and would only provide an “objective view of the side on camera angle”. Mr Williamson said that on the video evidence it looked that SO CHARMING may have been a ½ length clear but suggested it was more likely to be a length or more, or somewhere “around that distance”. He said that SO CHARMING was never a length and its own length clear of ARONOV at the time of the shift. He said it was an error of judgement from Ms Rogerson, in that she crowded V Colgan on ARONOV who was dictated inwards, crowding MINI MYSTIC and causing JUST KATE to be checked.

Under cross examination Mr Rogerson asked Mr Williamson if Mr Colgan was taking a hold of his horse before the interference. Mr Williamson said that Mr Colgan was riding his horse forward just prior to the interference but then took a hold of his horse and pulled it out in an attempt to relieve the pressure.

Witness V Colgan

In his evidence Mr Colgan stated that his instructions were to lead but Miss Rogerson had begun better than him. He said that when the incident happened his mount was to the inner of Miss Rogerson and he moved in with her. He said he had to move into the gap to stay off B Rogerson's heels and let her clear him. He said that B Rogerson was 1.5 lengths in front when he had to move in to avoid heels.

Mr Rogerson confirmed with Mr Colgan whether it was his intention to pull back in and behind Miss Rogerson. Mr Colgan confirmed that he was eventually going to come back and pull off Miss Rogerson’s heels.

Witness W Pinn

Mr Pinn said he had pressure from his outside and was dictated in by the horse on his outer (ARONOV) who was probably equal to a neck in front of him.

Mr Rogerson put to Mr Pinn that B Rogerson was 1-2 lengths in front of Mr Pinn when she shifted in. Mr Rogerson said to Mr Pinn that V Colgan moved in before B Rogerson moved in, W Pinn responded “Yes”. Mr Rogerson also said that Miss Rogerson was “away” from V Colgan when V Colgan shifted in, Mr Pinn responded yes.

In response to a question from the Committee Mr Pinn confirmed he did not call out when he was being pressured but said that V Colgan was “doing all the yelling” and he was unsure who Mr Colgan was yelling at. He said he tried to keep his horse as straight as possible but got forced in due to ARONOV forcing him in.

Witness T Thornton

Ms Thornton said that just after the 1050m she had pressure from her outside and had to take hold of her mount. She said the two horses that were outside her were MINI MYSTIC (W Pinn) and ARONOV (V Colgan), at the time of the tightening Ms Thornton estimated MINI MYSTIC was a bare length in front of her.

Mr Rogerson asked Ms Thornton if she thought that Miss Rogerson was her own length and another length clear of the horses to Ms Thornton’s outside. In Response Ms Thornton said that she had not noticed Miss Rogerson but thought she was more forward and outside of the horses to her outer. She said at the time Miss Rogerson crossed it was hard to tell how far she was in front and added that in her opinion it was V Colgan that had caused the interference.

Evidence - Respondent

Mr Rogerson in support of Miss Rogerson commenced by saying that using the film in evidence against Miss Rogerson was an insult due to the backwards angle (not a true side angle) it presented. He said that in his opinion ARONOV had caused all the trouble and that Rider T Thornton had agreed with him. He said that the Stipendiary Stewards put forward that Miss Rogerson was only 1.5 lengths clear when crossing however Mr Rogerson believed it was 2 lengths, and that Miss Rogerson was not guilty of careless riding.

Miss B Rogerson had nothing further to add.

Summing up – Informant

In summing up Mr Jones said that the Stipendiary Stewards had established that at no stage was Miss Rogerson her own length and another length clear and this was supported by the video films and V Colgan’s evidence. He said that it was clear that Mr Colgan had got in initially but then straightened his mount, soon after he said B Rogerson allows her mount to shift in putting pressure on V Colgan when only 1.5 lengths clear which resulted in tightening to MINI MYSTIC and JUST KATE who was checked.

Summing up – Respondent

In summing up Mr Rogerson said the Stipendiary Stewards had got it wrong. He said that B Rogerson was always 2 lengths clear otherwise ARONOV would have been on SO CHARMING’S heels, and the trouble/tightening had occurred earlier. He said that when T Thornton was checking her mount B Rogerson was clear (of ARONOV). He further added there was no case to answer and that the interference was due to the tightening that had occurred earlier.

Miss B Rogerson had nothing further to add.

Reasons For Decision:

The Committee took the opportunity to view all the video films available, it was clearly evident that there was pressure to JUST KATE, which resulted in this horse being checked, which had come from horses to its outer. The Committee then sought to establish, was this pressure because of Miss Rogerson shifting in when not her own length and another length clear, dictating ARONOV inwards and therefore Miss Rogerson riding in a careless manner?

The side-on video film which was used as evidence, was not particularly helpful in establishing the margin of clearance when Miss Rogerson shifted inwards. The camera angle is from behind and to the inside of the runners and makes it very difficult to establish the margin between runners as they approach the bend. From the evidence the Committee heard and the video films that were available, the margin was estimated from 1.5 lengths and above. The Committee was not able to establish from the video evidence that the margin was less than 2 lengths when Miss Rogerson shifted ground.

We also noted that B Rogerson looked to the runners on her inside prior to shifting ground; what this illustrates to the Committee is that she was “showing care” in moving down towards the rail in an attempt not to inconvenience any other runner.

To find the charge established, the standard of proof is met when the Committee is satisfied based on credible evidence, that the particulars of the charge as outlined in the Information have been proved. Given the uncertainty around the margin at the time, Ms Rogerson (SO CHARMING) moved inwards and the evidence put forward by the witnesses, and the quality of the side-on film, the Committee is not satisfied the charge of Careless Riding has been proved to the requisite standard.

Decision:

The charge of Careless Riding is dismissed.

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