Racing Victoria seeks change to appeals

Racing Victoria seeks change to appealsRacing Victoria will investigate the appeals procedures of other sports, including the AFL, to improve the current framework.

Chief executive Rob Hines said the current system allowed appeals to firstly be heard by the Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board and then by VCAT (Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal) “without an issue or error of law”.

“It allows for three bites of the cherry on the facts of a case, not on a matter of law,” Hines said.

“It’s not appropriate to hear a case three times. The process is flawed.

“On the third round new witnesses can even be called.

“It doesn’t happen in any other jurisdiction or sport.

“There is no problem with VCAT. They’ve done a good job. The problem is with the process itself.”

High profile jockeys Craig Williams and Nash Rawiller went to VCAT in an attempt to gain stays of proceedings to allow them to ride in the Melbourne Cup pending appeals to that body over careless riding suspensions.

Both were unsuccessful with Frenchman Christophe Lemaire replacing Williams on Melbourne Cup winner Dunaden.

Authorities are also worried about jockeys exploiting the three-day time frame to lodge appeals.

“The three days to appeal can be left to abuse,” Hines said.

RV management is preparing a report for its board’s integrity sub-committee and will recommend it make a submission to the Racing Integrity Commissioner and the state government regarding improving the existing appeal process in Victoria.

Any changes require the endorsement of the Racing Integrity Commissioner and the government.