Hawkes Bay RI 18 September 2021 – R4 – Elen Nicholas

ID: RIB4657

Respondent(s):
Elen Nicholas - Apprentice Jockey

Applicant:
Mr J Oatham - Chief Stipendiary Steward

Adjudicators:
N Moffatt

Persons Present:
Mr S Phelan (Trainer Lord Esperanza), Ms K Clapperton (Central Districts Apprentice Mentor) Mr N Goodwin (Stipendiary Steward)

Information Number:
A14587

Decision Type:
Adjudicative Decision

Charge:
Excessive use whip

Rule(s):
638(3)(g)(i) - excessive use of whip

Plea:
Admitted

Animal Name:
Lord Esperanza

Code:
Thoroughbred

Race Date:
18/09/2021

Race Club:
Hawkes Bay Race Club

Race Location:
Hastings Racecourse - 200 Prospect Road, Hastings, 4122

Race Number:
R4

Hearing Date:
18/09/2021

Hearing Location:
Hastings

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Apprentice Jockey Elen Nicholas is suspended for 6 days

SUMMARY OF FACTS:

The Information alleged a breach of Rule 638 (3) (g) (i) in that E Nicholas used her whip excessively on LORD ESPERANZA prior to the 100m.

At the outset of the hearing, Ms Nicholas confirmed she understood the Rule and admitted the breach.  Assisting her were Ms K Clapperton the Central Districts Apprentice Mentor and Mr S Phelan Trainer of LORD ESPERANZA.

Mr Oatham played the head-on video to show Ms Nicholas use her whip 6 times prior to the 100m mark. The limit is 5 strikes. She did not use her whip for the rest of the race and finished out of the placings.

REASON FOR DECISION:

Ms Nicholas admitted the breach, therefore the charge was deemed proved.

SUBMISSION FOR PENALTY:

Mr Oatham produced Ms Nicholas’ record under this Rule:

23/6/21               Counties              $300

31/7/21               Taumaranui        $600

03/9/21               Egmont               5 days suspension + $100

He said today’s breach was at the low end. She did not use much force and did not gain any advantage. The Stewards’ submission was for a penalty in line with the Guidelines. Ms Nicholas asked the Committee to take into account the fact she did not strike her horse for the remainder of the race.

REASON FOR PENALTY:

This is Ms Nicholas’ 4th breach of the Whip Rule in 3 months.

The Committee had regard to the revised Penalty Guidelines for which the starting point for a 4th offence  is 5 plus national days suspension plus 50% of the Jockey share of the stake.

Ms Nicholas’ record in regard to whip use appears poor but looking at each breach she has usually been only 1 strike over the limit of 5. In addition she is not using the whip in a forceful manner nor using it in situations where the horse has come to the end of its run. In recognition of her record there needs to be an increase in penalty from previous breaches, however taking into account her Apprentice Rider status and those factors already outlined it was deemed that an appropriate penalty is one of 6 days suspension. There was a $600 payout for horses finishing 6th to 10th with Ms Nicholas’ share being $15. The Committee did not believe it necessary to apply a fine for this meagre amount.

With regard to a suspension being imposed Ms Nicholas advised of riding commitments through until Saturday September 25th.

CONCLUSIONS:

Ms Nicholas is suspended from the close of racing on Saturday September 25th up to and including racing on Sunday October 3rd – 6 riding days suspension.

Decision Date: 18/09/2021

Publish Date: 20/09/2021