Canterbury JC 20 January 2022 – R1 – Tina Comignaghi

ID: RIB7047

Tina Comignaghi - Jockey

John Oatham, Chief Stipendiary Steward

Russell McKenzie

Persons Present:
Mr Oatham, Ms Comignaghi

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:
Idle Lady


Race Date:

Race Club:
Canterbury Jockey Club

Race Location:
Riccarton Park - 165 Racecourse Road, Christchurch,

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:
Riccarton Park, Christchurch

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Jockey, Tina Comignaghi suspended 7 days and fined $200


Following the running of Race 1, Riccarton Park Function Centre Maiden, Jockey, Tina Comignaghi admitted a charge alleging excessive whip use prior to the 100 metres.

Rule 638 (3) (g) (i) 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 reminding on the reins).

Using the available video replays, Chief Stipendiary Steward, John Oatham, demonstrated that the Respondent struck her mount 7 times from the straight entrance to the 100 metre mark. Her mount went on to win the race by a 1/2 length margin, he said.

In response, by way of explanation, the Respondent said she accepted the alleged count of 7 strikes. She has recently been riding on the West Coast circuit on tight tracks and, going to a maiden 2000 metres at Riccarton with its long straight, had caught her out. She felt that her mount was “idling a bit”. There were no excuses, she said.


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


Mr Oatham produced the Respondent’s record which indicated four previous breaches of the whip Rule:

18 September 2021 at Riccarton (two breaches) – fined $250 for 6 times prior to the 100 metres and fined $300 for using whip in consecutive strides

2 October 2021 at Riccarton – fined $500 for using whip in three consecutive strides

10 October 2021 at Winton – suspended 5 days and fined $100 for using whip in consecutive strides.

This breach was, therefore, a 5th breach, Mr Oatham said. The NZTR Revised Penalty Guide (from 1 September 2021) provides for a penalty of 5+ days suspension and a fine of 50% of the jockey’s share of the stake for a 4th breach, with each consecutive penalty to be increased by 1-2 days. Ms Comignaghi’s 50% share of the stake in this instance is $168, he said.

Pursuant to Rule 1006(2)(b), the Respondent requested a deferment of any proposed suspension to enable her to fulfil riding engagements at the Riccarton meeting on 29 January.


The Penalty Guide for a 4th breach of this nature is a starting point of 5+ national riding days suspension plus 50% of jockey share of stake. This offence is a 5th and the guide provides that each consecutive penalty in 6 months is to be raised 1 or 2 days.

After considering the video evidence, the submissions and having due regard for the number and frequency of strikes, the force used and the Respondent’s share of the stake ($168), the Committee determines there are no compelling reasons to depart from the Penalty Guide starting point – that is to say, 5 days plus additional days for the 5th offence. The Committee fixes the number of additional days in this case at two.


The Respondent is granted a 9-day deferment. Her Licence to ride in races is suspended for 7 national riding days, from close of racing on 29 January 2022 until close of racing on 10 February 2022.

In addition, a fine of $200 is imposed.




Decision Date: 20/01/2022

Publish Date: 24/01/2022