Racing NSW Stewards have inquired into an allegation that apprentice jockey Madison Waters struck a thoroughbred horse across the head with her whip whilst riding trackwork at Kembla Grange Racecourse on the morning of Thursday, 21 May 2020.
Following initial investigations, Stewards also inquired into the circumstances surrounding an interaction alleged to have occurred on the morning of Saturday, 23 May 2020 between trainer Luke Price and licensed trackwork rider Sally Faulks, a witness in the matter involving Madison Waters.
Evidence yesterday was taken from apprentice jockey Madison Waters, trainer Luke Price, apprentice jockey Jessica Del Frari, trackwork riders Sally Faulks and Emma Burns, and Racing NSW Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr Toby Koenig.
Transcripts of interviews conducted by Racing NSW Senior Investigator Jacqueline Johnstone with jockey Winona Costin and trackwork rider Cameron Dignam were also tendered into evidence. Stewards also considered a veterinary report provided by veterinary surgeon Dr Ramiro Pellegrini.
Charge – Apprentice Madison Waters
Ms. Waters pleaded guilty to a charge of improper conduct under AR228(b) in that on the morning of Thursday, 21 May 2020, when riding an unnamed 2yo colt by Rip Van Winkle at Kembla Grange Racecourse, after pulling up, she did strike that colt on at least two occasions in the head using her whip.
Penalty: License suspended in full for a period of two months, to commence immediately and to expire on Monday, 14 September 2020, on which day she may resume her duties.
In assessing penalty, Stewards were mindful of Ms Waters's guilty plea and her unblemished record, however, were also conscious of the serious nature of the matter.
Charge – Trainer Luke Price
Mr Price was found guilty of a charge of unseemly behavior under AR228(b) in that on the morning of Saturday, 23 May 2020 at Kembla Grange Racecourse he did approach licensed trackwork rider Sally Faulks, and make comments to her that were intimidatory in nature given that Ms Faulks was a witness in an ongoing inquiry involving his apprentice Madison Waters.
In assessing penalty, Stewards were mindful of Mr Price’s unblemished record in over 20 years as being a licensed person, however, considered the serious nature of the matter.
Ms Waters and Mr Price were both advised of their rights of appeal.
AR 228 Conduct detrimental to the interests of racing
A person must not engage in:
(b) misconduct, improper conduct or unseemly behavior