Wellington RC 13 January 2024 – R8 – Ryan Hurdle

ID: RIB37602

Ryan Hurdle - Jockey

Mr J Oatham

N Moffatt and B Mainwaring

Persons Present:
Mr B Jones, Stipendiary Steward, Mr Ryan Hurdle

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Race Related Charge

Careless Riding

638(1)(d) - Riding/driving infringement


Animal Name:


Race Date:

Race Club:
Wellington Racing Club

Race Location:
Trentham - 10 Racecourse Rd, Upper Hutt, 5018

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:
Trentham Racecourse

Outcome: Proved

Penalty: Jockey Ryan Hurdle is suspended for 4 weeks and fined $2000


Following the running of Race 8, the Respondent Mr Ryan Hurdle admitted a charge of careless riding which was filed pursuant to Rule 638(1)(d).  The Information alleged that he permitted his mount “EXPRESS YOURSELF” to shift inwards when not sufficiently clear of BONNY LASS which was checked, causing crowding to IFNDOUBTGETOUT, with LINCOLN’S KRUZ then striking a heel of IFNDOUBTGETOUT near the 700metres.

The Respondent acknowledged he understood the Rule and confirmed his admission of the breach.

Rule 638(1)(d) provides: A Rider shall not ride a horse in a manner which the Adjudicative Committee considers to be careless.

Mr Oatham had Mr Jones explain the incident using the available race films. The field jumped and Mr Hurdle ended up in front leading. When shifting in closer to the rail, Mr Hurdle was not the required distance clear of BONNY LASS, who was crowded onto IFNDOUBTGETOUT (L Allpress).  As a result, Mrs Allpress was checked and dropped back onto LINCOLN’S KRUZ, who clipped a heel and dislodged Rider Mr Riddell.

Mr Oatham said there were 2 parts to the incident. Firstly, Mr Hurdle shifted in when only a bare length clear of BONNY LASS, and he steadied the pace.

When invited, Mr Hurdle said he had nothing to say.


As the Respondent admitted the breach, the Adjudicative Committee finds the breach proved.

Submissions for Penalty:

Mr Oatham said Mr Hurdle’s Australian record was not readily available, but he faced a charge of slowing the pace at Otaki on Boxing Day and was suspended for 5 days.  He said Mr Riddell’s fall today was a direct consequence of Mr Hurdle’s careless riding and  submitted that a 4 week suspension was standard when a fall occurred. He also suggested the Adjudicative Committee take into account the  Group 1 status of the race and Mr Hurdle’s 2nd placing.

Mr Hurdle declined to make any penalty submissions, but advised any suspension could start immediately.

Reasons for Penalty:

The Thoroughbred Racing Penalty Guide (February 2023) provides for a 4 week suspension starting point when careless riding results in a fall. The head-on film clearly showed Mr Hurdle coming across to take the lead without being sufficiently clear of BONNY LASS, when he crossed in front of Mr Grylls. As a result, Mr Grylls was forced to take a hold and shifted in onto IFNDOUBTGETOUT, who was on the fence. The confined racing space left Mrs Allpress with nowhere to go but backwards, resulting in LINCOLN’S KRUZ in behind clipping a heel. The Adjudicative Committee concluded that Mr Hurdle’s careless riding was the primary cause of Mr Riddell’s fall. In light of the substantial interference suffered by three horses in a Group 1 Race, the Adjudicative Committee added 1 week to the starting point, resulting in a 5-week suspension.

Mitigating factors were Mr Hurdle’s admission of the breach and his record for which due credit was accorded. (While Mr Hurdle was recently suspended at Otaki;, that particular charge was brought under a different Rule.)  Taking into account the status (Group 1) and stake of the race, a fine was also deemed appropriate. Mr Hurdle ran 2nd in the race, with his share of the stake being  $4,162.

Upon careful consideration of all pertinent factors, a 4-week suspension, coupled with a forfeiture of 50% of the earned stakes, was deemed a proportionate penalty.


Mr Hurdle’s Licence to ride in races is suspended for a period of 4 weeks commencing after racing today, Saturday January 13th 2024, and concluding after racing on February 10th 2024. In addition, he is fined the sum of $2000.

Decision Date: 13/01/2024

Publish Date: 15/01/2024