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Waikato RC 18 May 2019 - R 9 - Chair,Mr A Dooley

Created on 20 May 2019

ADooley (chair)
Ms S Spratt - Class A Rider
Mr J Oatham - Chief Stipendiary Steward
Mr B Jones - Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Careless Riding

Following the running of race 9, Kerr & Ladbrook Caterers @ Te Rapa 1600, an Information was filed pursuant to Rule 638 (1)(d). The Informant, Mr Jones, alleged that Ms Spratt directed her mount YATIMA outwards when not sufficiently clear of DON’T DOUBT ME which was checked near the 300 metres.

Ms Spratt 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 identified that YATIMA was racing behind DON’T DOUBT ME passing the 400 metres. He said shortly after that point Ms Spratt opted to direct her mount outwards when there was no run available to her. He said that Ms Spratt was only ½ to ¾ of a length clear of DON’T DOUBT ME and as result that runner suffered interference. He added that LUEN YAT MIRACLE commenced to lay in near the 300 metres but not to any noticeable degree.

Ms Spratt said that on the corner YATIMA was following LUEN YAT MIRACLE when that runner rolled in. She said that she made a split decision to shift outwards and believed that LUEN YAT MIRACLE, or its rider Mr Harris, contributed to the incident. She added that had the interference not occurred YATIMA would have won the race.


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

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Jones produced Ms Spratt’s record which showed 2 previous breaches of this Rule in the last 12 months, the most recent being 22 April 2019. He said the level of carelessness was above midrange and stated that DON’T DOUBT ME suffered sharp interference.

Ms Spratt disagreed with the Stewards view that the level of carelessness was above midrange. She said although her movement outwards was abrupt she was in danger of clipping a heel where YATIMA was positioned. She advised the Committee that any proposed suspension could start immediately.

Reasons For Penalty:

The Committee carefully considered all the evidence and submissions presented.

The Committee reviewed the video films and found that YATIMA was looking to obtain a run on the inside of LUEN YAT MIRACLE passing the 350 metres. The initial gap closed when HELLO SAILER shifted into that position. Ms Spratt then quickly turned YATIMA’s head outwards and rode her mount forward. In doing so she was only ¾ of a length clear of DON’T DOUBT ME. As a result YATIMA made firm contact with DON’T DOUBT ME who lost its rightful running line and was checked losing ground.

There was no video evidence to support Ms Spratt’s assertion that LUEN YAT MIRACLE, or its rider Mr Harris, contributed to the incident.

The Committee deemed the level of carelessness displayed by Ms Spratt was midrange.

The JCA Penalty Guide starting point for midrange carelessness is 8 national riding days which was adopted.

There were no aggravating factors that warranted an uplift in penalty.

The mitigating factor was Ms Spratt’s admission of the breach for which she was afforded a 1 day reduction in penalty.

We considered Ms Spratt’s record to be a neutral factor when assessing penalty.

After taking into account all the above factors the Committee considered that an appropriate suspension was 7 days.


Accordingly, Ms Spratt had her license to ride in races suspended for a period to commence after racing on 18 May and conclude after racing on 30 May 2019.

The race meeting on 19 May at Riverton was not included in the penalty because the declaration of riders had closed.

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