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Waikato RC 14 April 2019 - R 6 (instigating a protest) – Chair, Mr G Jones

Created on 15 April 2019

Rules:
Rule 642(1)
Committee:
GJones (chair)
ADooley
Respondent(s):
Mr D Miller (Trainer of SHEEZALLMINE)
Informant:
Mr A Forsman (Co-Trainer of QIJI EXPRESS)
Information Number:
A11092
Horse Name:
SHEEZALLMINE
Persons present:
Mr A Forsman
Mr M Cameron (rider of QIJI EXPRESS)
Mr D Miller (trainer of SHEEZALLMINE)
Mr J Miller (owner of SHEEZALLMINE)
Ms T Newman (rider of SHEEZALLMINE)
Mr M Williamson (Senior Stipendiary Steward)
Evidence:

Following the running of Race No 6, the Lodge Real Estate 1200, an Information was filed Instigating a Protest pursuant to Rule 642(1). The Informant, Co-Trainer QIJI EXPRESS, alleged that horse number 6 (SHEEZALLMINE) placed 1st by the Judge interfered with the chances of horse number 1(QIJI EXPRESS) placed 2nd by the Judge.

The interference was alleged to have occurred in the final straight.

The Judge's provisional placing were as follows:

1st No. 6 SHEEZALLMINE
2nd No.1 QIJI EXPRESS
3rd No. 5 BURGUNDY BELLE
4th No. 11 RIP EM UP

The official margin between 1st and 2nd was 1 and ¾ lengths.

Rule 642(1) provides:

“If a placed horse or its rider causes interference within the meaning of this rule 642 to another placed horse, and the Judicial Committee is of the opinion that the horse so interfered with would have finished ahead of the first mentioned horse had such interference not occurred, they may place the first mentioned horse immediately after the horse interfered with”.

For the purposes of Rule 642 “interference” is defined as:

(i) a horse crossing another horse without being at least its own length and one other clear length in front of such other horse at the time of crossing;

(ii) a horse jostling with another horse, unless it is proved that such jostling was caused by the fault of some other horse or Rider or that the horse or Rider jostled with was partly at fault; or

(iii) a horse itself, or its Rider, in any way interfering with another horse or the Rider of another horse in a Race, unless it is proved that such interference was caused by the fault of some other horse or Rider or that the horse or Rider interfered with was partly at fault.

At the commencement of the hearing the essence of the ‘Protest Rule’ - Rule 642(1) was explained to all parties as well as the necessary standard of proof.

Submissions For Decision:

Mr Forsman said that SHEEZALLMINE commenced to roll outward from the 300 metre mark. This caused his horse (QIJI EXPRESS) to be forced over extra ground. He said his horse has gone up to win the race several times and at the 150 metre mark it was significantly checked and denied the chance to win.

Mr Cameron submitted that the winner moved out from the 300 metre mark. He said that he got within ¾ to 1 length of the winner and was “working into the race nicely”. He said he was continually dictated outward and had to stop riding with the whip. At the 100 metre mark, he said he was checked, lost momentum and his mount had “the wind knocked out of him”.

Mr D Miller agreed that SHEEZALLMINE did shift out in the straight. He submitted that QIJI EXPRESS had just tagged onto the back of his horse and if the interference had not occurred it would not have beaten SHEEZALLMINE. He referred to the winning margin in support of his submission.

Ms Newman also agreed that she rolled off the fence but did not believe that QIJI EXPRESS would have got past SHEEZALLMINE.

Senior Stipendiary Steward provided expert opinion evidence. He stated that the official margin was 1 ¾ lengths. He said that at the 250 metre mark SHEEZALLMINE commenced to shift outward and dictate QIJI EXPRESS between 5-7 horse-widths. He said that QIJI EXPRESS received a significant interference at the 125 metre mark and lost more than a length as a result. He concluded that given that the winning margin was 1 ¾ lengths there may be some doubt that the interference has cost QIJI EXPRESS the winning of the race.

Reasons For Decision:

The Committee carefully considered all of the submissions presented and reviewed the available video footage several times in real-time and slow motion, frame by frame.

In our determination of this protest the rule requires the Committee to establish two limbs. First, we must establish that interference occurred; and second, that the horse interfered with would have beaten the other runner, had such interference not occurred.

The Committee established that Ms Newman permitted SHEEZALLMINE to shift out several horse widths from the 250 metres to the 125 metres. Ms Newman failed to take reasonable steps to avoid causing interference to QIJI EXPRESS in that she did not straighten her mount. As a result QIJI EXPRESS was hampered and suffered a significant check and loss of momentum at the 125 metres.

Following the interference we observed that over the concluding 100 metres of the race both horses had a clear and unobstructed run to the finish line. At all times SHEEZALLMINE always held a significant margin and had ascendency over QIJI EXPRESS.

The Committee is satisfied that SHEEZALLMINE did interfere with the chances of QIJI EXPRESS. However, given the 1 ¾ length margin between the 2 horses at the finish we cannot be comfortably satisfied that QIJI EXPRESS would have beaten SHEEZALLMINE.

In conclusion having considered the degree of the interference, the manner in which both horses finished the race off and the margin at the finish the Committee is of the opinion that QIJI EXPRESS would not have beaten SHEEZALLMINE. On that basis we dismiss the protest. 

Decision:

Accordingly, the protest is dismissed and the Judge's placings stand.

1st No. 6 SHEEZALLMINE
2nd No.1 QIJI EXPRESS
3rd No. 5 BURGUNDY BELLE
4th No. 11 RIP EM UP

The Committee authorised the payment of dividends and stake money in accordance with our decision.

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