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Methven TC 11 April 2021 - R 3 - Chair, Mr D Anderson

Created on 13 April 2021

DAnderson (chair)
Mr M Smolenski - Driver
Mr P Williams - Stipendiary Steward
Information Number
Breach of Whip Regulations and Rule 869(2)

Following the running of Race 3 an Information was filed by Stipendiary Steward Mr P Williams alleging a breach of Rule 869(2) and the Whip and Rein Regulations by Driver Mr M Smolenski.

The information alleged M Smolenski (ASHES OF DESIRE) used his whip free of the rein on several occasions in the home straight.

Mr Smolenski was present at the hearing and acknowledged that:

a) He understood the Rule and Regulations, and;

b) He admitted the breach.

Rule 869(2) provides that 'No driver shall during any race use a whip in a manner in contravention of the Use of the Whip Regulations made by the Board'.

The Whip & Rein Regulations state:

3.1. A driver may only apply the whip in a wrist only flicking motion whilst holding a rein each hand with the tip of the whip pointed forward in an action which does not engage the shoulder.

3.2. For the purposes of clause 3.1 'wrist only flicking motion' means-

3.2.1 Ensuring no force is generated by the use of the elbow or shoulder when applying the whip.

3.2.2 The forearm is not raised beyond 45 degrees relative to the racing surface.

3.2.3 Not applying the whip with overt force.

Mr Williams used the race video to identify Mr Smolenski driving (11) ASHES OF DESIRE towards the rear of the field and wide on the track in the home straight. Mr Williams pointed out that Mr Smolenski had crossed his reins to remove the whip from the dust cover and proceeded to use the whip free of the rein on three occasions.

Mr Smolenski confirmed that he had forgotten to regain the reins after removing the whip from the dust cover.


As Mr Smolenski admitted the breach the charge was found proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Williams stated that Mr Smolenski was an infrequent driver and had a clear record. It was submitted that the offending was a low to moderate level and considering all factors, the Stewards were seeking a penalty of no less than $200.

Mr Smolenski did not make any submissions on penalty.

Reasons For Penalty:

The JCA Penalty Guide provides a starting point of a $200 fine, mitigation inclusive, for a low level breach of this Rule. Low level is defined as when a Driver inadvertently reverts to the old style (free hand, loose reining and/or more than a flicking motion) but promptly takes corrective steps to return to the compliant style.

The Committee determined that a fine of $200 was an appropriate penalty in this case.


Mr Smolenski is fined $200.


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