Geraldine TC 27 November 2021 – R4 – Peter Davis
Geraldine Trotting Club
Orari Raecourse - Orari Station Road, Orari, 7992
Penalty: Driver Peter Davis is fined $300
SUMMARY OF FACTS:
Following Race 4, the Ecolab Trot, Driver Peter Davis was charged that, as the Driver of MADELEINE STOWE, after reaching the 1650m mark he eased the pace in a manner which caused interference to trailing runners.
Rule 869 (4) provides:
“No driver shall during any race do anything which interferes or is likely to interfere with his own horse and/or any other horse or its progress”.
Mr Davis had indicated on the Information form that he did not admit the breach and he confirmed this at the beginning of the hearing. The hearing then commenced as a defended hearing.
Mr Renault showed a video replay of the incident near to the 1650 metres. He pointed out MADELEINE STOWE, driven by Mr Davis. Mr Renault pointed to Mr Davis taking hold of his horse in an attempt to find cover, Mr Renault said that in doing so Mr Davis has eased the speed of the race. As a result Mr Renault said the trailing runners were hampered. Mr Renault pointed to three horses directly behind Mr Davis which were hampered as well as another runner which galloped as a result of the actions of Mr Davis.
Mr Renault submitted that Mr Davis, over a short period of time, has taken hold of his horse and eased the speed which has caused interference to the trailing runners.
In response Mr Davis said that the easing of the pace was not sudden that his move was very gradual and he only moved half a length over a period of several strides. Mr Davis accepted that there was a “chain reaction”, but did not accept the horses directly behind him were inconvenienced. However, he accepted that the horses further back were affected and galloped. Mr Davis said the impact was minimal. Mr Davis also referred to poor visibility.
REASON FOR DECISION:
Upon reviewing the video replay and considering the opposing arguments the charge was found proved. Mr Davis did ease the pace near the 1650 metre mark causing interference to the trailing runners. In the terms used in Rule 869 (4) Mr Davis, a Driver, has done something which interfered with other horses and their progress.
As stated above, Mr Davis who took exception to the assertion that the incident occurred suddenly, rather, he submitted it was gradual. Rule 869 requires a causative link between the actions of Mr Davis and the interference to the other horse or horses. In the evidence, Mr Davis, accepted, when questioned, that his actions caused impact to the trailing runners. This admission was sufficient to prove the breach.
SUBMISSIONS ON PENALTY:
Due to an incident in the race while this hearing was taking place the hearing was adjourned, as a result, there was a delay in completing the hearing. Mr Davis had to leave to transport his horses home. Mr Davis sought that the hearing continue in his absence. Given the circumstances this was granted.
Mr Renault submitted that Mr Davis has had 195 drives this season and had a clear record.
The starting point for penalty, he said, is a 6-drives suspension or a $300 fine. In reference to recent decisions, Mr Renault considered that a fine was an appropriate penalty, which should be between $250-$300.
In reaching this figure, Mr Renault submitted consideration should be given to the aggravating factor that a horse was effectively taken out of the race.
Mr Davis, through the Stewards, said that his preference was for a fine and he sought a fine of $200.
REASONS FOR PENALTY:
A fine is the appropriate penalty for the breach.
The appropriate starting point is $300. From here consideration is given to the aggravating factor of affecting another horse, however, balanced against the Mr Davis’ clear record the appropriate end penalty is a fine of $300.
Driver, Peter Davis, is fined the sum of $300.
Decision Date: 27/11/2021
Publish Date: 03/12/2021