Auckland TR 12 March 2022 – R8 – ROCABURY
Counties Racing Club
Pukekohe Park - 222/250 Manukau Road, Pukekohe Hill, Pukekohe, 2120
Outcome: Protest Dismissed
Following the running of Race number 8, an Information was filed Instigating a Protest pursuant to Rule 642(1). The Applicant A Calder Rider of VISTOWN alleged that horse number 1 (ROCABURY) placed 1st by the Judge interfered with the chances of horse number 8 (VISTOWN) placed 2nd by the Judge.
The interference was alleged to have occurred in the final straight.
The Judge’s ‘provisional placings were as follows:
1st No. 1 ROCABURY
2nd No. 8 VISTOWN
3rd No. 11 PROOST
4th No. 5 NOVAK
The official margin was ¾ length.
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 Adjudicative 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”.
Submissions For Decision
Prior to hearing submissions from the respective parties, the Adjudicative Committee requested that Stewards show all available race films of the alleged interference and identify the runners.
The Applicant Mr Calder said that his horse VISTOWN was travelling well as it entered the straight several lengths behind the eventual winner ROCABURY, and was giving him the indication it was going to finish the race off well. He said he looked to mount a run between two horses at which point ROCABURY shifted out abruptly into his line when barely a length in front of him. He said he then angled his mount to the inside of ROCABURY who then straightened back up and shifted inwards blocking him for around 10 strides. He said from around the 100m he had a clear run to the line and made up around 1.5 lengths on the winner. Mr Calder submitted after receiving the interference his horse still managed to pick itself back up and take good ground off the winner and submitted that without the interference he would have gone straight past the winner.
Mr Ralph the Trainer of VISTOWN said the interference was self explanatory and agreed with Mr Calder’s assessment.
Mr Riddell, the Rider of ROCABURY opened by saying his horse did drift out but he did straighten his mount, he said the interference was not for 10 strides and Mr Calder made an error of judgement by looking for a run inside him when if he had of stayed outside the run would have come for him. He said that the incident occurred near the 400m, the margin was ¾ of a length and that was too large to overturn the placings. He submitted that the connections of VISTOWN were having a throw at the stumps.
The Respondent Mr Harvey stated ROCABURY had assumed the lead a fair way out and had maintained a good gallop to the line. He thought that the margin of ¾ of a length was too great to overturn the placings. He said that when Mr Calder looked to the inside of ROCABURY (after the initial interference) there was no run available for VISTOWN and ROCABURY did not impede him as intimated by Mr Calder. He summarised by saying VISTOWN had his opportunity to win the race.
Stipendiary Steward Mrs Selvakumaran outlined the Stewards’ interpretation of the alleged interference, she identified that interference had occurred near the 300m where ROCABURY had shifted out and crowded VISTOWN. She said that the margin of ¾ a length needs to be considered when assessing the merits of the protest.
Reasons For Decision
In accordance with the requirements of the Protest Rule the Adjudicative Committee must firstly establish that interference occurred; and secondly, if interference is established, the horse interfered with would have beaten the other runner, had such interference not occurred.
After hearing submissions and reviewing the video footage the Adjudicative Committee established that at around the 300m ROCABURY shifted outwards into the running line of VISTOWN, who’s Rider (Andrew Calder) had to take a hold for 3-4 strides. Mr Calder then looked for a run to the inside which wasn’t available before coming across the heels of ROCABURY and having an uninterrupted run from the 250m to the finish line.
The Adjudicative Committee is satisfied that ROCABURY did interfere with the chances of VISTOWN, however having considered the degree and nature of the interference, the way both horses finished the race off and the margin of 3/4 length at the finish the Adjudicative Committee has some doubt that VISTOWN would have finished ahead of ROCABURY. On that basis, in the exercise of our discretion, the protest is dismissed, and the Judge’s placings stand.
Accordingly, the protest is dismissed, and the Judge’s placings stand. The Adjudicative Committee authorised the payment of dividends and stake money in accordance with the decision.
Decision Date: 12/03/2022
Publish Date: 14/03/2022