Taranaki RI 19 August 2023 – R2 – Katie Hercock

ID: RIB26371

Katie Hercock - Jockey

Mr Neil Goodwin - Senior Stipendiary Steward

Mr Bruce Mainwaring, Mrs Nicki Moffatt

Persons Present:
Mr Neil Goodwin - Senior Stipendiary Steward, Mr John Oatham - Chief Stipendiary Steward, Ms Katie Hercock

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Race Related Charge

Excessive Whip Use

638(3)(g)(i) - Contravention whip rule


Animal Name:
Liquid Les


Race Date:

Race Club:
Taranaki Racing Inc

Race Location:
New Plymouth Raceway - Rogan Street, New Plymouth, 4310

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:
New Plymouth Racecourse 1 Wogan Street New Plymouth 4310

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Jockey Katie Hercock suspended for 3 NR Days and fined $500


Following the running of Race 2, the Winstone Wallboards 1800, an Information was lodged alleging a breach of Rule 638(3)(g)(i) – being worded as follows:

struck her mount ‘LIQUID LES’ six times prior to the 100 metres

The pertinent Rule 638(3)(g) requires that a rider must not:

(i) except as provided for in (iii)(A) and (iii) of this sub-Rule, strike a horse with a whip more than 5 times prior to the 100-metre mark (other than in a slapping motion down the shoulder with the whip hand remaining on the reins); where

(iii) it shall not be a contravention of  (i) of this sub Rule if:

(A) a Rider strikes a horse six times prior to the 100 metre mark, provided that the Rider does not strike the horse more than four times after the 100- metre mark, 

Ms Hercock confirmed to the Adjudicative Committee that she understood the Rule (including the aforementioned recent change) and that she admitted the breach.


Using available film, Stewards were able the identify the incident.  The Respondent is seen to strike her mount six times between the top of the straight and the 100 metres mark, and on another five occasions, between same and the finish line. LIQUID LES won the event.

Ms Hercock confirmed that she agreed with count.


As the charge was admitted, it was deemed proved.

Submissions as to Penalty:

Stewards referred to the Respondent’s record as it relates to any breach of this particular Rule within the last six months. There were three noted namely:

Taranaki RI 24/3/2023 – 6 strikes – 2 days suspension + $500 fine

Woodville JC 10/4/2023 – 6 strikes – 2 days suspension + $500 fine

Manawatu RC 7/5/2023 – 6 strikes – 2 days suspension + $500 fine

Stewards referenced the current Penalty Guide which provides (in this circumstance) a $500 fine plus suspension for 2 National Days. They remained of the view that LIQUID LES winning the race, was an aggravating factor in determining penalty. Ms Hercock sought deferment of any suspension, advising of riding engagements at Awapuni on 25/8/2023.

Reasons for Penalty:

The breach is clearly identified and admitted. The Adjudicative Committee adopted the Guide as a starting point, namely a suspension of 2 days plus a fine of $500. An uplift of 1 day is deemed appropriate, given that her mount won the race by a narrow margin.  Penalty was therefore set at a 3 day suspension, plus fine of $500. A deferment of suspension was granted.


Ms Hercock’s Licence to ride in races is suspended for 3 National Riding Days from the close of racing on 26th August 2023, up to and including 31st August. In addition to same, a fine of $500 was imposed.

Decision Date: 19/08/2023

Publish Date: 21/08/2023