NZ Metro TC 22 July 2022 – R4 – Bob Butt

ID: RIB10081

Respondent(s):
Bob Butt - Driver

Applicant:
Mr S Renault - Stipendiary Steward

Adjudicators:
Dave Anderson

Persons Present:
Mr S Renault - Stipendiary Steward and Mr Butt

Information Number:
A17065

Decision Type:
Adjudicative Decision

Charge:
B Butt (BETTERTHANDIVA) used his whip with more than a wrist flicking motion in the run home

Rule(s):
869(2) - Whip Regulations

Plea:
Not Admitted

Animal Name:
BETTERTHANDIVA

Code:
Harness

Race Date:
22/07/2022

Race Club:
NZ Metropolitan Trotting Club Inc

Race Location:
Addington Raceway - 75 Jack Hinton Drive, Addington, Christchurch, 8024

Race Number:
R4

Hearing Date:
22/07/2022

Hearing Location:
Addington Raceway - 75 Jack Hinton Drive, Addington, Christchurch, 8024

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Driver Bob Butt is suspended for 4 days

Summary of Facts:

Following the running of Race 4, the Respondent denied a breach of Whip Rule 869(2).  The particulars of the charge are that Bob Butt as the Driver of BETTERTHANDIVA used his whip with more than a wrist flicking motion in the run home.

Rule 869 provides that:

(2) No driver shall during any race use a whip in a manner in contravention of the Use of the Whip Regulations made by the Board.

Stipendiary Steward Mr Renault used available video footage to demonstrate the alleged breach. He identified Mr Butt leading the field approaching the home straight and pointed to several strikes of the whip that, in the Steward’s opinion, were outside of the Regulations.

In response, the Respondent advised the Adjudicative Committee his defence of the charge is based solely on his belief the penalty does not fit the crime. He said he is going to “cop” a significant suspension, and in his opinion, is excessive for what had occurred on the track. He said the Penalties here in Canterbury have got out of hand.

Reasons for Decision:

The Adjudicative Committee on viewing the replays many times, found Mr Butt has clearly breached the Whip Regulations. His submissions did not defend the alleged breach, they only criticized the impending penalty.

Decision:

The charge is therefore proved.

Submission For Penalty:

Mr Renault produced the Respondent Mr Butt’s record which indicated 2 previous breaches of the Rule. The first was on the 16th of April 2022 at Addington – fined $200. The second was on the 6th of May 2022, also at Addington – a suspension of 4 days in a listed race.

Mr Renault said that Stewards assessed the breach to be in the low-level range and submitted that it be dealt with by way of a 5-day suspension.

The Respondent submitted he wished to start any suspension immediately

Reasons For Penalty:

After consideration of the evidence from all parties concerned and viewing the race films of the concluding stages of the race, the Adjudicative Committee assessed the breach as low-level.

A low-level breach is defined as when a driver inadvertently reverts to the old style (freehand, loose reining and or more than a flicking motion) but promptly takes corrective action to return to a compliant style.

A Low-level Penalty range is $200-$400 (first offence).

The aggravating factor in this case, is Mr Butt’s record, which under the Guidelines, necessitates a suspension as a penalty.

In terms of penalty the Respondent made no submissions.

Having considered all factors, the Adjudicative Committee deemed a suspension to be an appropriate penalty.

Conclusion:

The Respondent is suspended for a period of 4 days commencing 28 July 2022 and concluding on 7 August 2022.

Decision Date: 22/07/2022

Publish Date: 25/07/2022