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RNSW stewards' decision on Bowman suspension

Racing NSW Stewards on Thursday resumed an inquiry into the reasons Hot ‘N Hazy fell dislodging its rider Andrew Adkins near the 300 metres in Race 1 (Sky Racing Active Handicap, 1200m) at Rosehill Gardens on Saturday, 25 July 2020.


The hearing commenced following the running of Race 2 on the relevant day, at which time evidence was taken from Hugh Bowman (Smart Image), Glyn Schofield (Mr. Colorful), Louise Day (Sunborn) and Jason Collett (Lady Banff). Stewards Wade Birch and Tom Moxon also provided observations of the incident after which the hearing was adjourned to enable Andrew Adkins to provide evidence.

The inquiry resumed today in the absence of Andrew Adkins as he is still in hospital as a result of the serious injuries he suffered in the fall. In this respect, having regard to the extensive vision of the race, the Stewards formed the view that they were able to proceed with the inquiry without having to call upon Andrew Adkins to provide evidence.

This decision was not met with any objection from Andrew Adkins or his family which has assisted the Stewards in bringing the matter to a proper conclusion quickly, which is of extreme importance to the integrity of the industry and significantly contributes to maintaining public confidence by demonstrating that justice is served without delay.

Today, further evidence was taken from Hugh Bowman, Glyn Schofield, and rider of Duchess, apprentice Robbie Dolan.

Having regard to evidence taken on the day, Stewards determined it was necessary to take evidence from apprentice Dolan in the company of his master,Mark Newnham.

After considering all the evidence Stewards issued a charge of careless riding under Australian Rule of Racing 131(a) against jockey Hugh Bowman the particulars of which are outlined below:

As the rider of Smart Image in Race 1 at Rosehill on Saturday, 25 July 2020, Hugh Bowman did ride in a careless manner at a point approaching the 300 metres, in that, whilst riding his mount Smart Image along, he did then direct it out around the heels of the leader Mr. Colorful where there was insufficient room and in doing so made contact with Hot ‘N’ Hazy forcing Hot ‘N’ Hazy across the heels of Duchess, resulting in Hot ‘N’ Hazy clipping the heels of Duchess and dislodging its rider Andrew Adkins. Consequently, Sunborn was taken out onto Lady Banff which in turn was taken out onto Oscar Zulu resulting in Sunborn, Lady Banff and Oscar Zulu all having to be severely checked.

Hugh Bowman pleaded not guilty to the charge.

After considering further submissions from Hugh Bowman, Stewards found him guilty of the charge as particularised.

In considering the matter of penalty, Stewards had regard for the degree of carelessness exhibited by Hugh Bowman, the consequential effects of his actions, his good riding record, having only incurred one suspension in the previous 12 months, and matters the Stewards determined to have contributed to the severity of the incident. This principally concerned the movement outwards of Mr. Colorful at the relevant time which was racing in advance of Smart Image.

Whilst Stewards did not believe Glyn Schofield’s manner of riding at the relevant time breached the Australian Rules of Racing, they were satisfied that the shift outwards by Mr. Colorful did add to the severity of the incident and therefore acknowledged this shift when determining an appropriate penalty.

A further consideration for Stewards was penalty precedents for similar offences, with Stewards having regard for the case involving Mark Zahra at Randwick on 13 April 2019.

In all the circumstances, Stewards determined an appropriate penalty was a suspension of Jockey Hugh Bowman’s licence to ride in races for a period of 6 weeks to commence immediately and expire on Friday, 11th September 2020, on which day he may resume riding.

Relevant Rule
AR 131(a) Riding Offences
A rider must not, in the opinion of the Stewards
(a) engage in careless, reckless, improper, incompetent, or foul riding

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