Auckland TR 28 May 2022 – R6 – Trudy Thornton

ID: RIB9223

Trudy Thornton - Jockey

Matthew Williamson, Senior Stipendiary Steward

Russell McKenzie (Chair) and Gavin Jones

Persons Present:
Ms Thornton, Mr Dooley, Mr M Williamson

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Race Related Charge

Using whip more than 5 times prior to 100 metres.

638(3)(g)(i) - Contravention whip rule


Animal Name:


Race Date:

Race Club:
Auckland Thoroughbred Racing

Race Location:
Pukekohe Park - 222/250 Manukau Road, Pukekohe Hill, Pukekohe, 2120

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:
Pukekohe Park, Pukekohe

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Jockey, Trudy Thornton, suspended 6 national riding days


Following the running of Race 6, Mount Shop 2100, the Respondent, Class A Jockey Trudy Thornton, admitted a charge alleging excessive use of the whip prior to the 100 metres.

Rule 638(3)(g) provides that in a flat race a Rider must not:

(i)  strike a horse with a whip more than 5 times prior to the 100-metre mark (other than in a slapping motion down the shoulder with the whip hand remaining on the reins).


Stipendiary Steward, Adrian Dooley, pointed out on a video replay CHARMINGAFFAIR, ridden by Mrs Thornton, racing midfield on the rail as the field turned into the final straight. From that point, it was demonstrated that Mrs Thornton used her whip on 7 occasions prior to the 100 metres. The Adjudicative Committee noted that CHARMINGAFFAIR finished in 3rd placing, the margins being two short necks.

Mrs Thornton agreed with the alleged count of 7 strikes. She did not wish to comment on the breach.


As the Respondent admitted the breach, the Adjudicative Committee finds the breach proved (Rule 915(1)(d) refers).


Mr Williamson said that the Respondent has three previous breaches of the Whip Rules on her record:

  •  on 11.12.21 at Waikato, 7 strikes prior to the 100 metres, suspended 7 days.
  •  on 2.4.22 at Avondale, 6 strikes prior to the 100 metres, fined $250; and
  •  23.4.22 at Pukekohe, 6 strikes prior to the 100 metres in a Group 2, fined $750.

Mr Williamson referred to the Penalty Guide which, he said, provided for a period of suspension of 5+ national riding days for a 4th offence involving 2 additional strikes.

Mrs Thornton asked for a deferment of suspension to allow her to fulfil riding engagements at the meeting at Cambridge on 1 June next.


Mrs Thornton’s overall record under the Whip Rules is quite appalling – this present breach is her 9th in the current season (since 1 August 2021). However, the only relevant breaches (those in the previous 6 months period) are the three referred to by Mr Williamson in his penalty submissions. This breach, being the 4th in that period, is of concern.

The NZTR Revised Penalty Guidelines (effective 1 March 2022) provide for a “Suspension 5+ National Days” for a 4th breach involving 2 additional strikes. A 4th breach  requires an uplift from a 5 days starting point. The Adjudicative Committee has decided on a 1-day uplift for this 4th breach.


The Respondent is granted a deferment. Her Class A Jockey’s Licence is suspended for 6 national riding days from after close of racing on 1 June 2022 up to and including 8 June 2022.

Decision Date: 28/05/2022

Publish Date: 31/05/2022