NZ Metro TC 8 July 2022 – R9 – Matthew Williamson

ID: RIB9958

Matthew Williamson - Driver

Mr S Renault - Stipendiary Steward

Dave Anderson

Persons Present:
Mr S Renault, Mr N McIntyre - Stipendiary Stewards and Mr Williamson.

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Race Related Charge

Driving carelessly when shifting ground outwards when not fully clear of MARK DUNNETT which broke checking trailing runners.

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

Not Admitted

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 - 75 Jack Hinton Drive, Addington, Christchurch, 8024

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Driver Matthew Williamson is suspended for 2 days.


Following the running of Race 9, the Respondent Mr M Williamson denied a breach of Rule 869 (3)(b); namely that he drove carelessly near the 300 metres.

The Respondent endorsed the Information ‘I do not admit the breach of the Rule’ and confirmed he understood the Rule and the nature of the charge.

Rule 869 (3)(b) provides:

No driver in any race shall drive carelessly.

Using available video footage Stipendiary Steward Mr Renault identified the horses involved in the incident namely, WOLFENSTEIN driven by Mr Williamson, and MARK DUNNETT driven by Sheree Tomlinson.  He said passing the 400m, Mr Williamson’s horse was traveling up on the bit and was looking to ease out from behind the leader of the race TAS GIRL BROMAC, who was tiring. Mr Renault said Mr Williamson had the required advantage over MARK DUNNETT, but his shift outwards was very abrupt and Miss Tomlinson was unable to shift her horse clear. The abrupt shift resulted in contact with MARK DUNNETT’S hind leg causing it to break and lose its chance.

The Respondent Mr Williamson stated his defence of the charge is based solely on the manners of his horse. He said his horse was traveling too keenly and as he pulled him out he could feel him react too sharply. Mr Williamson said he corrected him immediately and contact was made as he was steering his horse inwards. He said the leader had run its race and combined with his horse over racing and ducking out, quickly resulted in the interference, not his carelessness.

Reasons for Decision:

The Video replay clearly shows the contact made by WOLFENSTEIN on MARK DUNNETTS’s hind leg. It is accepted by the Adjudicative Committee that WOLFENSTEIN was racing keenly behind a tiring leader of the race but in its opinion, WOLFENSTEIN was certainly not past the point of no control. This is a matter of strict liability of which there can be no other outcome than to attribute the blame, of the contact and resulting interference, to Mr Williamson


The charge is found proved.

Submission for Penalty:

Stipendiary Steward Mr Williamson produced the Respondent’s record which indicated a clear record under the Rule and added Mr Williamson has not breached any Rule in the last 12 months. Mr Renault stated Stewards assessed the breach as mid-range and therefore a suspension of 10 drives / 2 days would be an appropriate penalty. He said Mr Williamson would drive on at least 5 occasions per meeting.

The Respondent submitted he was not driving on 10 July.

Reasons for Penalty:

The Penalty Guide provides a penalty starting point of a 10-drive suspension or a $500 fine.

The Adjudicative Committee considers a suspension as the appropriate penalty.

After evaluating all of the factors the Adjudicative Committee determined a 2-day suspension to be an appropriate penalty in the circumstances of this case.


The Respondent Mr Williamson’s licence to drive is suspended from the 14 July 2022 to the 17 July 2022 inclusive.

Decision Date: 08/07/2022

Publish Date: 11/07/2022