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Whangarei RC 12 September 2015 - R 6 - Chair, Mr A Dooley

Created on 14 September 2015

ADooley (chair)
Mr L Innes - Licensed Jockey
Mr A Coles - Stipendiary Steward
Mr M Williamson - Sitpendiary Steward
Information Number
Careless Riding

Following the running of race 6, TAVISTOCK NORTHLAND BREEDERS STAKES, an Information was filed pursuant to Rule 638 (1)(d). The Informant, Mr Williamson, alleged that Mr Innes rode MARKY MARK carelessly causing interference to BILLY MOJO (C Grylls) with approximately 125 metres to run.

Mr Innes acknowledged that he understood the nature of the charge, the Rule and confirmed his 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 Coles identified on the video footage that near the 150 metres mark Mr Innes attempted to shift to the outside of THE JUSTICE LEAGUE but he elected to go inside across the heels of THE JUSTICE LEAGUE. He said Mr Innes misjudged the shift because he was only a bare length clear of BILLY MOJO. This resulted in Mr Grylls having to take a hold of his mount when checked.

Mr Innes admitted that he made an error of judgement when he shifted to the inside of THE JUSTICE LEAGUE. He was of the view that Mr Grylls over reacted to the interference when his horse was going fast. He added Mr Grylls received a slight check.


As Mr Innes admitted the breach the Committee find the charge proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Williamson produced Mr Innes’ record which showed 2 previous breaches under this Rule in the last 12 months. He said both breaches occurred in the NZ Derby and two 6 day suspensions were imposed. Mr Williamson said Mr Innes had been co –operative with Stewards, admitted the breach and the interference was due to an error of judgement. He told the Committee that Mr Innes was booked to ride two horses at a recent Industry day at Hastings when both horses were scratched.

Mr Innes advised the Committee that he had commitments at Hastings on 19 September and sought a deferment to any proposed suspension. He said he had a good record and asked the Committee to take into account that it is inevitable his penalty will include the Premier meeting at Ellerslie on 26 September.

Mr Innes submitted that he was intending to ride 3 horses for his father at Otaki on 24 September. Mr Innes added that he no intention of riding at Waverly on 1 October and he would like to be back riding at Whangarei on 30 September.

Mr Williamson was unable to provide Mr Innes’ recent riding history but when tested conceded that Mr Innes has no recent history of riding in the Central Region on Industry days. Mr Innes was unable to produce any evidence to the contrary.

In response to a question from the Committee, Mr Innes advised that he was aware of the new Penalty Guide and he added that he was conversant with the Appeal decision Mr J Parkes v RIU 31 August 2015.

Reasons For Penalty:

The Committee carefully considered all the evidence and submissions presented. The Committee have adopted 5 riding days as the starting point in considering the term of suspension for this careless riding charge. The mitigating factors are Mr Innes’ admission of the breach and his good record in relation to this Rule for which he has been given credit for. However, this has to be balanced against the consequences of Mr Innes’ actions which resulted in BILLY MOJO being checked.

We assess the level of carelessness to be low to mid – range and the video footage shows that Mr Innes’ was only a bare length clear. We consider this to be a neutral factor.

The Committee considered that the carelessness occurred in a Listed race worth $50,000. However, given the fact BILLY MOJO was weakening at the time the interference occurred Mr Innes’ was not penalised.

When tested further Mr Innes conceded that he did not ride at the Industry race meeting at Hastings on 16 July when two horses trained by Mr T Pike were scratched on the morning of the races.

The Committee is not satisfied that Mr Innes has intentions to ride for his father at Otaki on 24 September. We are mindful there is no recent history or historical which supports this. In the interest of consistency with other decisions this date is not included in this penalty.

The Committee reminded Mr Innes that in accordance with the JCA Penalty Guide he can’t be given credit for something that he hasn’t completed.

The Committee notes that the Premier 2 meeting scheduled for 26 September feature race is a Group 3 worth $70,000. If there had been a Group 1 race involved on that date the Committee may have exercised their discretion when imposing penalty.

After taking into account all the above factors the Committee considers an appropriate suspension is 4 days.


Accordingly, Mr Innes had his license to ride in races suspended for a period to commence after racing on 19 September and conclude after racing on 30 September 2015 (4 days).

Meetings encompassed:

23 September Matamata

25 September Te Aroha

26 September Ellerslie

30 September Whangarei

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