NZ Metro TC 18 August 2023 – R8 – Jack Harrington
NZ Metropolitan Trotting Club Inc
Addington Raceway - 75 Jack Hinton Drive, Addington, Christchurch, 8024
Addington Raceway, Christchurch
Penalty: Junior Driver, Jack Harrington, fined $250
Following the running of Race 8, Addington Cup Week ‘On Sale 31 August’ Mobile Trot, Junior Driver, Jack Harrington, admitted a breach that, as the Driver of SALVO in the race, he had driven carelessly when striking the wheel of RACEY KRUSA (Sarah O’Reilly) near the 300 metres.
Rule 869 provides:
(3) No driver in any race shall drive:-
Stipendiary Steward, Paul Williams, had Stipendiary Steward, Matt Sole, point out the two runners on a video replay. Mr Sole pointed out RACEY KRUSA, driven by Sarah O’Reilly, racing in the parked position as the field neared the home turn. SALVO, driven by the Respondent, was racing on the back of that runner, in the one-one.
Mr Williams said that Stewards were alleging that SALVO had struck the sulky wheel of RACEY KRUSA near the 300 metres. Miss O’Reilly had reported to Stewards post-race that she had sustained a punctured tyre. Mr Williams demonstrated, using a slow-motion video replay, the outside wheel of Miss O’Reilly’s sulky “shudder” as the tyre was struck by SALVO’s off-front foot.
The Respondent said that he had intended to make his move earlier than he did, as his mare had been lugging in on the bends. Miss O’Reilly’s runner had been under a drive from about the 600 metres. With his mare tending to lug in, and racing keenly on Miss O’Reilly’s helmet, he thought that it was likely to hit a wheel, he said. He tried to wait until as close to the straight as he could but, upon coming out, Miss O’Reilly’s horse was starting to “hamper” his runner. He was also concerned that the horse in the trail might get a run up on the inside and put a gap on him, so he came out before the straight, he said.
The Adjudicative Committee noted that SALVO finished 3rd in the race and RACEY KRUSA 6th.
SUBMISSIONS FOR PENALTY:
Mr Williams said that the Respondent is an infrequent driver – 19 drives to date this season and only one in the 2022 season. He has a clear record. He had admitted the breach promptly and cooperated with Stewards, Mr Williams said.
The Penalty Guide starting point is a fine of $300, Mr Williams said, and Stewards believed that a fine of $250 would be an appropriate penalty in this instance.
REASONS FOR PENALTY:
The RIB Harness Racing Penalty Guide (February 2023) sets a starting point for careless driving striking a wheel of a $300 fine. The Guide adds that “the consequences of this action go to penalty”.
This is a low-level breach with minimal consequences. It appeared that the chances of Miss O’Reilly’s runner were not significantly affected. There were no aggravating factors.
The Respondent has a clear record and has admitted the breach. Taking those factors into account, along with the breach being low-level, a discount from the starting point is appropriate. The Adjudicative Committee fixes the discount at $50.
Open Driver, Jack Harrington, is fined $250.
Decision Date: 18/08/2023
Publish Date: 21/08/2023