Racing Commission’s First Instance Tribunal to conduct hearing on Kingston Cup dead heat

Miniature Man (left) and Further and Beyond locked in battle in the Kingston Cup.
Miniature Man (left) and Further and Beyond locked in battle in the Kingston Cup.

KINGSTON, Jamaica - The much-anticipated investigation by the regulatory arm of horse racing, the Jamaica Racing Commission (JRC), into the dead-heat result in the recent Kingston Cup involving Further and Beyond and Miniature Man was convened yesterday at the JRC’s offices in Kingston.

It is understood that submissions were made to the commission by lawyers representing the JRC and the promoting company of horse racing, Supreme Ventures Racing and Entertainment Limited (SVREL). SVREL is a licencee under the Rules of Racing.

Afterwards, the commission took the decision to refer the matter to its First Instance Tribunal.

“After due consideration, so as to remove any possibility of a conflict of interest from this investigation or any other investigation, the Jamaica Racing Commission has transferred the investigation into the dead-heat which occurred in the Kingston Cup involving Further and Beyond and Miniature Man to the First Instance Tribunal,” chairman of the JRC, Clovis Metcalfe said.

Members of the First Instance Tribunal are appointed by the JRC board of commissioners under Sections 25 and 26 of the Jamaica Racing Commission Act, which states as follows:

SECTION 25 in part:

“The Commission where it considers it expedient so to do, hold or cause to be held an investigation —

  1. a) to determine whether any licence granted under Part 111 should be suspended or revoked;
  2. b) in respect of the breach of any regulations or of the Racing Rules made under this Act or any terms or conditions of any licence or provisional licence; or
  3. c) as respects any matter related to or connected with its functions as so as to determine whether any such functions should be exercised,

and with respect to any such investigations the following provisions shall have effect —

(i) the person or persons holding the investigations (hereafter in this this section referred to as “the tribunal” shall do so in such manner and under such conditions as the tribunal may think most effectual for ascertaining the facts of the matter under investigation.

(ii) The tribunal shall have for the purpose of the investigation all the powers of a Resident Magistrate to summon witnesses, call for the production of books and documents and to examine witnesses and the parties concerned on oath.

SECTION 26:

“The Commission may by instrument of writing and subject to such conditions as may be specified in the instrument delegate to any person and of the functions exercisable by the Commissioner by provisions of the Act or any other enactment.”

Appeals of findings by the First Instance Tribunal can be made to the JRC board of commissioners.

At present the First Instance Tribunal is chaired by former Director of Public Prosecutions Kent Pantry. The other members of the Pantry-led tribunal are George McPherson (longest serving member), veterinarian Dr Paul Turner, Dr Michael Coore (medical doctor and former JRC commissioner), Dr Paul Wright (medical doctor, racehorse owner/breeder and racing analyst), and Cliff Williams (broadcaster and racing analyst).

Even since the dead heat in the Kingston Cup (May 8) was announced there has been a swirl of comments in and out of racing circles along with photographs of the two horses (Further and Beyond, Miniature Man) at the finish line with many pundits claiming that the dead-heat result was wrong.

The JRC had previously stated that the investigation will be paying attention to the photo finish equipment, its calibration before the start of a race day along with equipment maintenance. The investigation will also be looking at all other aspects pertaining to the determination of race results at Caymanas Park.

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