Should There Be A Rethink Of Rule 113 Section 09 (c ii)?

Affair - Reyan Lewis
Affair - Reyan Lewis

The Jamaica Racing Commission Act of 1972 replaced the Jockey Club as the regulatory body of horseracing industry. By 1977, to transition from its amateur status, founding chairman Sir John Mordecai oversaw the implementation of a comprehensive set of Racing Rules to ensure that from a legal and other perspective there was a platform on which a fully professional racing industry could be established.

Since then, several changes to the original many of which defy logic, have been deemed necessary,  such as Rule 113 section 09 (c ii) which states in part, “where a horse fails to finish the race with any item of equipment in which it was declared, it shall be disqualified from the race”.

As it relates to the disqualification of “first past the post” Affair (7-2), ridden by Reyan Lewis for Gary Subratie, in the 1200-metre three-year-old maiden second race and awarded to 15-1 bet First Offence (Shamaree Muir), saddled by Steven Todd, the race day panel of Operation Stewards were correct. Affair’s cheek pieces were undone 400 metres out. In addition, section ciii (e) imposes a maximum fine of $10,000 on the trainer.

Here is where the defiance of logic comes in. Section 09 (ciii)  of the same Rule 113 makes an exception as it applies tongue tie/tongue strap and states in part, “if it becomes loose during the race this shall not disqualify the horse.” The presumption must be that declared equipment is intended to enhance performance legally. Therefore, with this disqualification dichotomy, there are three questions to be considered here.

Firstly, if any declared equipment is lost during the race why is there no presumption the horse performed at a disadvantage? Secondly, in terms of declared equipment lost during the race, why is one loss of equipment allowable and another is not?  Thirdly, is there then a presumption in the Rule, that this was a corrupt practice by the trainer?  Incidentally, the regulatory British Horseracing Authority has no such disqualification stipulation in the UK Rules Of Racing.


One Response

  1. I expected that trainers and owners along with the Jamaica Racing Commission should be responding to your question.

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