Rangiora HRC 1 January 2023 – R3 – Devon Van Til

ID: RIB13935

Devon VanTIl - Junior Driver

Shane Renault, Stipendiary Steward

Mr Russell McKenzie

Persons Present:
Mr Renault, Ms Van Til, Mr M Sole-Stipendiary Steward

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Race Related Charge

Careless driving

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


Animal Name:


Race Date:

Race Club:
Rangiora Harness Racing Club

Race Location:
Rangiora Racecourse - 312 Lehmans Road, Fernside, Rangiora, 7440

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:
Rangiora Racecourse

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Junior Driver, Devon Van Til fined $250


Following the running of Race 3, Balcairn Stockfoods F&M Mobile Pace, the Respondent, Junior Driver Devon Van Til, as the Driver of TREASURE TRAIL in the Race, admitted a charge that she drove carelessly in the home straight when contacting the wheel of REMY BROWN (Blair Orange) causing her horse to break.

THE Respondent endorsed the information “I do admit a breach of the Rule” and she confirmed she understood the Rule and the nature of the charge. She was assisted at the hearing by Open Driver, Gavin Smith.

Rule 869 provides:

(3) (b) No driver in any race shall drive carelessly.


Mr Renault had Stipendiary Steward, Matt Sole, show the incident on side-on and head-on video replays. Mr Sole pointed out TREASURE TRAIL, driven by the Respondent, 3-wide and held up on the back of REMY BROWN, driven by Blair Orange, as the field turned into the final straight. It continued to be held up and, inside the final 50 metres, the Respondent attempted to take a gap to the outside of REMY BROWN and, in doing so, contacted the sulky wheel of that runner and broke. The Respondent had made an error of judgement and there was never a full run, Mr Renault said. He added that it was of concern to Stewards that the Respondent had activated the removable earplugs at that stage.

Mr Smith agreed that it was an error of judgement by a Junior Driver. He showed on the video replay that it was only a very small margin preventing the Respondent from being able to take the gap. She ought not to have activated the gear but it was reasonable, he submitted, for the Respondent to anticipate that a gap was coming. He further submitted that Mr Orange’s runner had moved out slightly just prior to the contact.


The charge is admitted and is therefore deemed proved.


Mr Renault said that the Respondent had 104 drives in the season just completed and has a clear record under the Rule. The starting point is a $300 fine or a 6-drive suspension. The Respondent indicated that she would prefer a fine. Stewards were seeking a fine of not less than $250.

Mr Smith submitted that this was an error of judgement by someone who was learning. He had earlier pointed out that the breach had no consequences.


The Committee noted the submissions of the parties. The Penalty Guide starting point for penalty for careless driving striking a wheel is a 6-drive suspension or a $300 fine. A suspension is not appropriate in this case.

The breach was minor, with no consequences. The Respondent has a clear record and has admitted the breach. For a combination of those factors, a discount from the starting point is warranted and the Committee fixes that discount at $50.


The Respondent is fined $250.

Decision Date: 01/01/2023

Publish Date: 12/01/2023