Rangitikei RC 20 November 2021 – R3 – Sarah McNab

ID: RIB5922

Sarah McNab - Jockey

N Goodwin - Stipendiary Steward

N Moffatt

Persons Present:
Mr N Goodwin, Ms S McNab, Mr K Coppins - Stipendiary Steward

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Race Related Charge

slowing pace

638(4) - Riding/driving infringement - Slowing pace


Animal Name:


Race Date:

Race Club:
Rangitikei RC

Race Location:
Awapuni Racing Centre - 67 Racecourse Road, Awapuni, Palmerston North, 4412

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Jockey Sarah McNab - 5 days suspension


Following the running of Race 3 the Respondent Ms S McNab admitted a charge of slowing the pace which was filed pursuant to Rule 638(4). The Information alleged that S McNab (KAPINOS) unreasonably slowed the pace in the back straight.

The Respondent acknowledged she understood the Rule and confirmed her admission of the breach.

Rule 638(4) provides: A Rider shall not unreasonably slow, reduce or check the speed of his or her horse to a degree that interferes, either directly or indirectly, with any other horse in the race. [Amended 1 August 2017] 


Mr Goodwin explained that Ms McNab’s riding instructions were to sit outside the leader or in the 1-1  position. When she reached the rail Ms McNab took a hold of her  mount on two occasions, and each time this caused interference to the horse in behind her. GO JAMES (T Comignaghi) hit the running rail for several strides when the Rider was forced to check off the heels of KAPINOS. The second time Ms McNab took a hold of her mount Ms Comignaghi was forced wide to avoid clipping a heel. Mr Goodwin said Ms McNab should have let KAPINOS roll along and not compromise the runners in behind her.

By way of explanation Ms McNab said she wanted to ease and have the other horses come around her but KAPINOS overreacted. She admitted that she had overdone it.


As the Respondent has admitted the breach the Adjudicative Committee found the breach proved


Mr Goodwin produced the Respondent’s riding record which indicated no previous breaches under this Rule. Ms McNab has had 187 rides this season and is a busy Rider. He said she very rarely bothered the Stewards but submitted a suspension was an appropriate penalty.   Ms McNab advised of riding commitments through until Thursday next week.


The Adjudicator considered all submissions. The result of Ms McNab slowing the pace was significance interference to GO JAMES who had nowhere to go, and as a result made contact with the running rail before coming wide to avoid clipping a heel.  The safety of Rider Ms Comignaghi was compromised and other runners were also affected but to a lesser degree. The breach was midrange.

The Committee is aware of four previous breaches of this Rule (which used to be covered by the Careless Riding Rule) in 2021. Mr Cropp and Mr Douglas (Jumps Riders) were both suspended for 2 days and Ms Hashizme and Ms Hemi for 3 days. The Penalty Guide provides a starting point of 6-8 days but following Covid restrictions, and Rider shortages, penalties have been generally reduced. A starting point of 6 days was adopted. Credit for Ms McNab’s clear record and ready admission of the breach was reflected in a 1-day reduction.


Ms McNab is suspended for a period of 5 days commencing after racing on Thursday November 25th and concluding after racing on Thursday December 2nd.

Decision Date: 20/11/2021

Publish Date: 22/11/2021