BHA unveil new whip rules

The British Horseracing Authority has published its review into the use of the whip and have set out guidelines that all jockeys will have to follow from Oct 10 this year, however they stopped short of banning the whip from racing.

Chief among the recommendations will be the amount of times a jockey can strike a horse. In a flat race a jockey will only be able to strike a horse seven times in a race, this will be extended to eight times in a jump race.

There will also be tougher punishments for jockeys that break the rules. If a jockey breaks the frequency rule then they will be hit with an automatic five day suspension.

Should a jockey receive a three day suspension will lose their share of their prize fund and their riding fee.

Professor Tim Morris of the BHA said of the guidelines “We have set out a very clear guide with tough penalties. Jockeys wanted clarity and there is now a strict guide on when and how the whip can be used and where it can be used.

Champion National Hunt trainer in England Paul Nicholls is happy with the findings saying ““Whilst I’ve been a critic of the Rules in the past, nobody likes seeing misuse of the whip and I agree that the time had come when something had to be done. I am pleased that the BHA has made sensible and reasonable changes, and I am supportive of them.

Frankie Dettori who fell foul of the whip rules at Royal Ascot in June, said “I am not proud of having fallen foul of the whip Rules in the past but I have never harmed a horse.

“These new Rules are easy to understand which will help all jockeys ride within them. I accept these new Rules are in the best interest of our great sport and it is right that they should be in place in time for Britain’s richest ever raceday, QIPCO British Champions Day.”


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