Following conjecture over the race one incident at last Wednesday’s Mildura Harness meeting Victorian Harness Racing stewards have moved to clarify the race fall procedures.
Drivers competing in the Victorian Harness Racing industry are required to be aware of the applicable Australian Harness Racing Rules (AHRR) and Harness Racing Victoria (HRV) policy in relation to a fall or incident during a race that may result in the HRV Stewards calling a race off for safety reasons.
The policy says that when the 'Steward in Charge' decides that a race is to be stopped due to an obstruction on the track as a result of a fall or other incident, he shall sound the fall siren in a continuous manner and advise the Clerks of Course that the race has been ordered to be stopped. The Clerks of Course, if available to do so, shall clearly and distinctly alert the drivers that the race has been stopped.
Once drivers are aware of the siren being sounded and or direction being provided by an official (Clerk of course, Steward etc.) that a race has been called off, drivers are required to adhere to such directions and ease their horses out of the event in a safe manner.
Harness Racing Rule 171 says that In the event of an obstruction occurring on the track during a race, drivers shall observe due caution and obey instructions given by the Stewards or any appointed person.
A driver who fails to comply with sub rule (1) is guilty of an offence.
HRV rules empower Stewards to stop, restart, rerun, postpone or abandon any race.
In a statement the HRV said that any queries in relation to this policy can be made by contacting the HRV Stewards Department.