NZ Metro TC 6 May 2022 – R9 – Craig Ferguson

ID: RIB8961

Craig Ferguson - Driver

Nigel McIntyre, Chief Stipendiary Steward

Russell McKenzie

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Race Related Charge

Careless Driving

869(3)(b) - Riding/driving infringement


Animal Name:


Race Date:

Race Club:
NZ Metropolitan Trotting Club Inc

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

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:
Addington Raceway, Christchurch

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Driver, Craig Ferguson, suspended 3 days.


Following the running of Race 9, NZB Standardbred “Uncut Gems Trotters Classic” Handicap Trot (Listed Race), the Respondent, Driver Craig Ferguson, admitted a breach of Rule 869(3)(b) in that, as the Driver of SMOKIN BANDAR in the race, he drove carelessly near the 350 metres when allowing his horse to contact the sulky wheel of BJ LINDENNY (Jim Curtin) and break briefly.

The Respondent endorsed the Information ”I do admit the breach of the Rule” and confirmed that he understood the Rule and the nature of the charge.

Rule 869(3)(b) provides:

No driver in any race shall drive carelessly.


Using the available video replays, Stipendiary Steward, Shane Renault, pointed out SMOKIN BANDAR, driven by the Respondent, racing five places back on the markers and held up by the tiring BJ LINDENNY (Jim Curtin) as the field left the back straight for the final time. Near the 350 metres, the Respondent then tried to improve into a gap, not a full gap, between that runner and MIDNIGHT DASH (Ricky May) on its outside. As he shifted out, the leg of his runner made contact with the sulky wheel of BJ LINDENNY, and broke briefly, losing its position.

Mr Ferguson said that he agreed with Mr Renault’s account of the incident. He explained that he had anticipated that Mr May was moving wider and there would be a gap. The runner in front had been tiring. He had made “a wrong call”, he said.


The charge is admitted by the Respondent and is therefore deemed proved.


Stipendiary Steward, Shane Renault said that the Respondent has had 103 drives in the current season (from 1 January 2022) and last season had 327 drives. His record is clear in relation to careless driving.

Mr Renault pointed out that the race was a “major race” (a race with stakes of $40,000 or more) in terms of the Penalty Guide. The starting point for careless driving in a major race is a 3-day suspension and Stewards believed that was an appropriate penalty for this breach.

Mr Ferguson indicated that he wished to take any suspension commencing after racing at Invercargill on  7 May.


After evaluating all of the factors, the Adjudicative Committee determined a 3-days suspension to be an appropriate penalty in this case. The carelessness was low-level and the consequences were of a minor nature. However, the race was a Listed Race for a stake of $40,000 and, having regard to that, is deserving of a penalty of not less than a 3-days suspension.


The Respondent, Craig Ferguson ‘s, licence is suspended for 3 days commencing after racing on 7 May 2022 up to and including 21 May 2022 – 3 days. The meetings intended to be included in the period of suspension are NZ Metropolitan TC on 13 May, Winton HRC on 14 May and Invercargill HRC on 21 May 2022.

Decision Date: 06/05/2022

Publish Date: 09/05/2022