Ashburton RC 16 October 2023 – R9 – Darren Danis

ID: RIB28824

Darren Danis - Jockey

Mark Davidson - Stipendiary Steward

O K Jarvis (Chair) / R McKenzie

Persons Present:
Mr Davidson, Mr Danis, Ms Algar-Stipendiary Steward

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Race Related Charge

Careless riding

638(1)(d) - Riding/driving infringement


Animal Name:


Race Date:

Race Club:
Ashburton Racing Club

Race Location:
Ashburton Racecourse - Racecourse Road, Ashburton, 7700

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:
Ashburton RC

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Rider, Darren Danis suspended 6 days plus fined $700


Following the running of Race 9, an Information was filed by Stipendiary Steward, Mr Mark Davidson, against Mr Darren Danis, alleging careless riding, in that he permitted his mount STAR OF JUSTICE to shift inwards shortly after the start when not sufficiently clear of EMPRESS SUIKO which was checked with ILLICIT DREAMS and WARNING SIGNAL then being checked.

Rule 638(1)(d) reads as follows;

“(1) A Rider shall not ride a horse in a manner which the Adjudicative Committee considers to be:

    (d) careless”

Mr Danis had indicated on the Information that this breach of the Rules was admitted, which he confirmed at the hearing. Mr Danis also acknowledged that he understood the charge and the Rule it was brought under.


Mr Davidson, with the assistance of Ms Algar, used the Race films to show the incident. Ms Algar used the footage to show the four horses involved.

Ms Algar submitted that Mr Danis’ mount jumped awkwardly but at that time he has corrected his mount, however, he has then ridden his mount forward and caused interference to Mr Callaway due to shifting inwards when not clear of him. Mr Danis then has continued to roll forward which has crowded Ms Newman who then is forced into the running line of Mr Chowdhoory.

Mr Danis submitted that he accepted he had moved inwards but that there were mitigating factors.  He said he had looked inwards and did not realise Mr Callaway was as close. Mr Danis also said that the incident looked worse because of the movement of other runners.


As Mr Danis had admitted the breach, the charge was found to be proved.


Mr Davidson said Mr Danis had not been riding much this season due to an injury.

Mr Davidson agreed that Mr Danis’ mount did shift in at the start but from that point it was his obligation to keep off inside runners. Due to the impact to the other runners the Stewards submitted that this was a mid-range breach.

The Stewards submitted that the mitigating factors were his record and his admission of the breach.

Furthermore, Mr Davidson submitted that due to this being a Group 3 Race he sought an uplift to reflect this as well as the addition of a fine in line with the Penalty Guide given it was a Black Type Race. Mr Davidson submitted that the fine should be in the range of $1400 which is 50% of the stake Mr Danis won.

Mr Danis asked the Adjudicative Committee to take into account that he had to fly back to the North Island following the original Ashburton raceday being postponed due to weather in order to attend the races at Rotorua. He said that the Rotorua meeting was then also called off and he had to fly back to Christchurch on short notice for the rescheduled Ashburton meeting. He submitted that this was an expensive exercise which was out of his control.

Mr Danis sought a deferment until 18 October 2023.


The Adjudicative Committee agreed that this breach is within the mid range. Accordingly the starting point adopted is a 7 day suspension. A discount of 1 day is appropriate to reflect his frank admission of the breach and his good record.

The Adjudicative Committee agree that the addition of a fine is appropriate given it was a Group 3 Race, however, the fine should be tempered given the somewhat unusual circumstances as the original Ashburton meeting was called off due to weather conditions meaning Mr Danis had to buy a last minute flight to then return to ride at the rescheduled meeting. Accordingly, a fine of $700 is appropriate.

A 6 day suspension and a fine of $700 is the appropriate penalty in this case. Mr Danis’ deferment was granted.


Mr Danis is suspended for 6 days from the end of racing on 18 October 2023 up to and including 26 October 2023. Furthermore, he is fined $700.








Decision Date: 16/10/2023

Publish Date: 26/10/2023