Protecting the Integrity & Reputation of Irish Horseracing

J.P. O'Brien Appeal Hearing

J.P. O’Brien Appeal – Navan, 28th May 2011

The Appeals Body, Division Two, J.R. Craigie (in the Chair), Michael Doyle and Sean Barry met at the Turf Club on 2nd June 2011 to consider an appeal from J.P. O’Brien, apprentice rider, against the decision of the Stewards at Navan on 28th May 2011 when, following the running of the AES Handicap, he was suspended for two race days for careless riding.

The grounds of appeal lodged were that “the two days were unwarranted”.

Evidence was heard from K.J. Manning, rider Late Debate (USA), W.J. Supple, rider Via Del Corso (GB), A.P. O’Brien, trainer Flavia Tatiana and J.P. O’Brien.  Recordings of the race were also viewed.

In his evidence K.J. Manning stated that J.P. O’Brien caused interference to him when he drifted across.  He said there was a gap and he was entitled to be there.

In his evidence W.J. Supple stated that he was not aware of the interference between K.J. Manning’s horse and J.P. O’Brien’s horse.  He also said that he didn’t suffer any interference.

In his evidence A.P. O’Brien stated that J.P. O’Brien was not responsible for any interference that was caused.

In his evidence J.P. O’Brien stated that his horse went left after he used his stick but said that he was far enough in front because if he wasn’t, Kevin Manning’s horse would have clipped heels.  In response to a question from the Chairman, J.P. O’Brien accepted that his horses drift was more pronounced than he originally thought.

Having considered the evidence, the Appeals Body found that there was interference which was caused by J.P. O’Brien and that he did not take reasonable steps to avoid causing that interference.  In arriving at the decision, the Appeals Body found that he had made no effort to change his whip hand.  They dismissed the appeal and ordered that the original suspension of two race days (11th and 12th June) stand.  They also ordered that he pay costs of €600.

The case was presented by Conal Boyce, Wilkinson & Price Solicitors, Naas, Co. Kildare.


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