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Matters relating to the integrity of animals and people in the industry are no longer overseen by Racing Queensland and are governed by the Queensland Racing Integrity Commission. For more information, visit their site here.
A Stable Return and Gear Form, with all sections completed, must be lodged with Racing Queensland Limited (RQ) immediately a horse comes under the control of a trainer with the intention of preparing the horse to participate in education, official trials or racing.
In the event of a change to any particulars a fresh stable return must be lodged immediately with the Controlling Body. Changes in gear however can be notified on an Alteration to Gear Form. (Refer to the section on Gear for details of gear requirements).
If a stable return has not been lodged RQ Officials reserve the right to refuse nominations under Rule 119B which reads "Unless the stewards otherwise approve, a horse shall not be eligible to be nominated for a race unless the horse has been trained by a licensed trainer for not less than 28 days immediately prior to the date fixed for nomination."
Any trainer relinquishing the training of a horse shall notify RQ in writing, or via HarnessWeb, immediately upon the horse leaving his/her care.
Any interstate trainer visiting with horses for the purpose of racing in Queensland must provide a Stable Return detailing the particulars of the horse and where the horse will be domiciled during their Queensland visit.
The conditions for education sessions are as follows:
a) Nominations - Must be to the RQ Racing Office no later than 10.00am on the working day prior or at the closing time otherwise stated for the trials to be conducted. Nominations can be supplied by phone on 07 3869 9774, fax on 07 3269 6715 or email. Harness Web is not available for education nominations. Trainers must supply their name, the horses name or in the case of un-named horses the horses breeding, age and sex.
b) Eligibility - Only horses that have not had a race start are allowed to participate unless otherwise approved by Stewards under special circumstances.
c) A stable return must have been lodged with RQ Racing Office staff to be eligible to compete.
d) An $11 fee (GST inclusive) is applicable for all education sessions and this will be charged to the trainers account.
e) Drivers in education sessions must hold an A, B, or C Grade drivers licence to be eligible to drive.
f) Brands and markings will be checked by RQ Officials.
g) Stewards reserve the right to cancel these sessions at their discretion.
Education Sessions are to be conducted as follows:
While every attempt will be made to accomodate education horses, RQ cannot guarantee these horses will be allocated a stable. Race horses will be given stabling priority on race days.
RQ Officials reserve the right, due to unforeseen circumstances, to change or cancel any programmed education session.
The conditions for official trials are as follows:
a) Nominations - Must be to the RQ Racing Office no later than 10.00am on the working day prior or date otherwise specified. Trainers must nominate by fax, email, HarnessWeb or by lodging a written nomination at the counter of the RQ Deagon office. Phone nominations will NOT be accepted.
b) Eligibility - All standardbreds are eligible to trial at any time unless at the close of acceptances any horse is stood down for a veterinary certificate which has not been produced or stood down by order of RQ Officials.
d) Brands and markings will be checked by RQ Officials.
e) RQ Officials reserve the right due to unforseen circumstances to cancel or combine any official trial if deemed necessary.
f) Stabling - every effort will be made to accommodate as many trial horses as possible however RQ Officials may on occasions not allocate them a stable. (Refer to 3.4). Race horses will be given priority in stabling.
g) Ballots - On occasions it may be necessary to conduct a ballot from the trials should there be too many horses to accommodate. (Refer to 3.4 for balloting conditions).
h) The race meeting will always have priority over the trials.
i) When splitting trial fields RQ Handicappers may where possible, depending on time restraints, separate trotters and pacers should there be four or more horses of each gait nominated to trial for any start type.
j) In all cases the split of trial fields and the handicapping of horses in standing start trials are at the discretion of the RQ Handicapping Panel. Where possible RQ will attempt to split owner, trainer and driver doubles. All decisions will be final and any scratchings will incur the relevant fees.
k) Usual handicaps for standing start trials may not take effect as horses may be grouped together to simulate race conditions.
Fees & Closing Times
The fee schedule is as follows:
$11.00 (GST inclusive)
Late Scratching Fee
Nominations and scratchings are to close as per the following schedule (except on Public Holidays):
**Closing times will be strictly enforced
Scratchings can be made on HarnessWeb prior to the scratching deadline, however scratchings can be phoned in on the RQ Scratching Hotline 1800 331 308 or on 3869 9774.
When scratching a horse, trainers must clearly identify the following:
i. Trainers Name
ii. Trainers Licence Number
iii. Meeting Details
iv. Horses Name
Trainers of all official trial nominees are to be charged by RQ a nomination fee; there is to be no pay up on course.
Horses that are scratched prior to the scratching close time will incur a nomination fee.
Horses that are scratched after the scratching close time without an acceptable reason, will incur an additional late scratching fee.
Examples of Fees
Nominate and scratch after scratching closing time or do not attend the official trials after nominating, the trainer will be invoiced an $11.00 (GST inclusive) nomination fee and an $11.00 (GST inclusive) late scratching fee ($22.00 in total).
Tuesday & Thursday (except @ Redcliffe)
Trainers are welcome to request a preferred time for their trial. Trainers requests will be considered when determining the order for the trials however RQ Officials cannot guarantee that trainers requests will always be met.
If Wednesday trials are programmed at Albion Park or Gold Coast a standing start trial may be added to the program.
Marburg & Redcliffe (Saturday Race Meetings)
The number of trials will be determined depending upon the availability of staff, time allowable to conduct the trials and the amount of horses that can be safely accommodated.
If at any time, due to excess horses nominated for trials & the lack of available stabling to accommodate them, RQ reserve the right to conduct a ballot.
Where ballots are required, preference in selection will be given to horses in the following order of preference:
i) have not yet qualified from the mode of start nominated for;
ii) the need to re-qualify to race (under bar or have not raced or trialled in over 6 months);
iii) the need to trial to be re-included in the barrier draw (ODM, ODS, RODM, RODS).
iv) C Grade Driver gaining experience required to obtain licence to drive at race meetings.
When determining whether a ballot for trials will be required the below factors will be taken into account:
i) Number of available stalls at the race club.
ii) Number of stables which possibly could be reused.
iii) Total number of horses which can be safely accommodated limiting any inconvenience to other participants.
iv) Time available to conduct trials.
RQ Officials will always allocate a stable to horses engaged to race at the race meeting first and whilst endeavouring to accommodate as many horses as possible, RQ reserve the right to not allocate a stable to trial or education horses if necessary.
Trainers are reminded that they are only to use the stables they have been allocated and should they place a horse in a stall not allocated to them, inconveniencing others, they may be dealt with appropriately by RQ Stewards.
In order to avoid confusion for judges, officials and RQ staff loading trial results, driver declarations are requested by 8.30am on the day of the trial if at all possible or RQ Officials are to be advised of the driver as soon as possible on the day of the trial.
Club colours cannot be used in trials or pre-race warm-ups. A penalty may be applicable if appropriate race colours are not available.
RQ reserves the right, due to unforeseen circumstances, to cancel any programmed official trial.
Qualifying to Race
a) A horse must be named to be eligible to compete in a Qualifying or Official Trial.
b) To be eligible for a mobile start race a horse must qualify in a mobile start Qualifying Trial and/or to be eligible for a standing start race a horse must qualify in a standing start Qualifying Trial.
c) If a trial is divided into a division with 2YO's only engaged then the trial will be run over the distance closest to 1609m.
d) To qualify to race, a horse must complete the following requirements within the qualifying mile rates as listed below:
i. In a mobile start - score up without interference to other horses and be in its correct barrier position at the candy pole until the starting point, then complete the trial in a competitive manner without losing gait or rhythm.
ii. In a standing start - not delay the start through intractability and begin at the correct gait then complete the trial in a competitive manner without losing gait or rhythm.
An additional time allowance will be permitted as follows:
e) For such qualifications to be valid, a minimum of four horses must contest the trial, unless otherwise approved by RQ Stewards.
f) Stewards at their discretion may make additional time allowances after considering the track condition.
g) Any horse which is presented to compete in an Official Barrier Trial for the purposes of qualifying to race for the first time, and fails to qualify as per Clause 3.6 d), may be excluded from the draw or be stood down and not permitted to compete in any Official Barrier Trial for a period of up to 14 days, except in circumstances where it failed to qualify because of the actions of another runner, and/or with permission of the Chairman of Stewards.
h) Any horse which has not competed in a race for a period exceeding six (6) months must perform competitively, to the satisfaction of the Stewards, in an official barrier trial, before being entered to start in any race. Such horse must also meet the time requirements in order to requalify.
i) Any horse which has not raced for a period exceeding six (6) months, and has attained the age of twelve (12) years or older, will also be required to have a veterinary certificate of soundness provided, prior to competing in such barrier trial. The veterinary certificate must be provided prior to acceptance time for the trial.
* For the purposes of this policy a horse must perform in such trial in accordance with Clause 3.6 d).
j) Horses cleared from other states and/or countries:
i. A horse trained outside the state of Queensland will be qualified to race in a mobile start at a race meeting in Queensland if such horse has raced or qualified from a mobile start in the State or Country where it is trained, or has qualified in the state of Queensland.
ii. A horse trained outside the state of Queensland will be qualified to race in a standing start at a race meeting in Queensland if such horse has raced or qualified from a standing start in the State or Country where it is trained, or has qualified in the state of Queensland.
k) To change the gait of a horse, the owner or trainer must lodge with RQ a written request accompanied by the registration certificate. The horse must qualify to the satisfaction of Stewards on two (2) occasions. Both trials cannot be performed on the same day. A further change of gait cannot be approved until the expiration of three months from the date of the previous request unless otherwise approved by RQL Stewards. A horse changing gait will keep its current assessment (i.e. a C2 becomes a T2, a T2 becomes a C2).
l) If a horse is required to produce a veterinary certificate prior to trialling, it must be received by acceptance time for the event it is accepting for or it will be deemed ineligible.
m) The total of 28 Field Selection Points gained by a horse when first qualified to race will not be altered if the horse thereafter qualifies for the alternate type of start (mobile or stand) in a Qualifying Trial.
n) There are no race field selection points awarded in official trials.
A horse must be nominated for a race or an official trial on an official nomination form, in neat and legible print, sent by facsimile to 07 3269 6715, lodged at the RQ Deagon office reception desk, sent via email or entered via HarnessWeb. Nominations by telephone are NOT permitted, except in extreme circumstances.
Nominations for horse education ONLY are permitted via phone by contacting the RQ Racing Office on 07 3869 9774. Education nominations close at 10.00am the business day prior to the race meeting or at the time otherwise notified by RQ Officials. Trainers are to state their name, the horses name or breeding, age and sex of an un-named horse when nominating.
All nominations close with Racing Queensland only.
No trainer will be permitted to enter a horse for a race, or any driver be declared for any engagement, which is scheduled for the following (new) season, unless the relevant person has renewed his/her respective licence at the time of the declaration.
Trainers who nominate by facsimile should ensure that their fax machine has the correct time, date and ID facsimile number. In the event of a nomination not being received by RQ, this information may enable RQ to ascertain whether the horse's nomination should be accepted.
Trainers who nominate via HarnessWeb are reminded that they should always check any nominations lodged by using the 'MY NOMS' icon. This will confirm that nominations have been correctly lodged and provide a chance to rectify any problems or errors.
As changes are sometimes made to race programs, trainers should always refer to the latest edition of the Racing Queensland Magazine. Updated programs are also available at www.harness.org.au and on HarnessWeb.
A horse must be qualified to race prior to the close of acceptances for the race they have nominated for.
Unless otherwise advised by RQ, when nominations for a race(s) at a meeting are extended, it will be until 9.00am the next business day. Preference in field selection will be given to original nominations.
If nominations are extended, all registered trainers will receive an SMS detailing which races are extended and the closing time. Please be sure your mobile phone details in the system are current.
In the event that an unqualified horse is nominated for a race for which nominations are extended, and then qualifies prior to the close of extended nominations, such horse shall be deemed to be a late nomination for the purpose of field selection.
If a horse is required to produce a veterinary certificate prior to racing, it must be received by acceptance time for the event it is accepting for or the horse will be declared ineligible to start.
If a horse is stood down to trial and is also engaged to race at an upcoming meeting, such horse will be scratched from its engagement. There will be no opportunity to trial the horse between engagements in an effort to clear it to race.
When nominations have been extended for a particular race, any horse that has been scratched prior to acceptance time, may only be re-nominated on the same handicap mark in a standing start race or under the same assessment mark in a mobile start race and shall be treated as a late nomination.
A concession claiming driver may not be substituted for a non-concession claiming driver, and accordingly, a non-concession claiming driver may not be substituted for a concession claiming driver after the 10am deadline.
For a horse to be eligible for a claiming race, a correct claiming authority form must be lodged prior to acceptance time.
Except with the approval of the RQ Stewards, the claiming price for a horse may not be altered after the advertised close of acceptances, even when the nominations are extended.
Claiming Prices for events graded up to and including $9,000 may only be in increments of $500 (i.e. $2, 000 or $2, 500).
Claiming Prices for events graded $10,000 or higher may only be in increments of $1,000 (i.e. $10,000 or $11,000).
Unless stipulated in race conditions, in standing start claiming races claiming prices may only be in increments of $1,000. Horses are then handicapped 10 metres for each $1,000 that their claiming price exceeds the front of the race.
The claiming price of a horse may be increased (from the most recently lodged claiming authority form) by the trainer in writing, via HarnessWeb nomination or on the official nomination form, but may only be decreased (from the most recently lodged claiming authority form) by the owner/s on an official claiming authority form.
Any horse nominated for a claiming race can only accept for one claiming race per calendar day.
Any horse that is owned or trained by a person/s listed on the 'Unpaid Forfeits List' at the time nominations close will be made ineligible.
A confirmed driver engagement must be notified to RQ no later than the time specified beneath the individual race program in the Racing Queensland Magazine or on the Harness Racing Australia website. (Refer table below). If a driver is not notified by the specified time a fine may apply.
Driver declarations close
Saturday (NON TAB)
**Time and days may vary due to Public Holidays.
Driver changes required after the notified time can be made under special circumstances but must be approved by Stewards. The driver must be replaced by a driver of a similar standard or licence type unless otherwise approved by Stewards. For example:-
i) Concession Driver - must be replaced by another Concession Driver
ii) An A Grade Driver cannot be replaced by a B Grade Driver.
Race fields are selected by using one of two methods.
A) Automatic Race Field Selection.
B) Manual Race Field Selection - Metropolitan Meetings
If a horse accepts for two or more races at a meeting, a trainer may notify the RQ Handicapping Panel of a preference for one race over another.
Horses are always considered in the first instance for the race entered as their 1st preference.
A horse will be considered for subsequent preferences should they receive a ballot from their preferred event.
Preferences for horses nominated for multiple races on Harness Web will be determined by the time and order entered. For example a nomination lodged at 7.30am on a particular day will be considered as first preference over a nomination lodged at 7.35am that day for the same horse.
Should acceptances for more than one race meeting close on the same day and trainers wish to start their horse at both meetings, if circumstances allow, the trainer must indicate their intentions to RQ Handicapping staff otherwise the nominated horse/s will be considered for one start only.
Trainers are encouraged to communicate any requests to RQ Handicapping staff prior to the 10.00am deadline when acceptances close to avoid any disappointment. Requests can be phoned in, indicated on fax or email or noted on the "Nom Comment" section in Harness Web.
Examples of requests include:-
i) Two starters or none
ii) I have nominated 3 horses for the one race, if there is only one division I would like only 2 starters
iii) Early race please
iv) I have nominated six horses but can only transport four, so four starters maximum please.
All communication with RQ Handicappers regarding the race meeting being drawn that day will cease at 10am unless trainers have been notified that nominations have been extended.
Any horse which qualifies in a Heat, Repechage or Semi-Final and is scratched from that Final before Acceptance Time will incur the penalties as described in Clause.
Where a race is being split to allow for the maximum number of races budgeted per meeting to be conducted, races are to be split in the following order of preference:
In feature races of $20,000 or more an emergency will be drawn should there be sufficient acceptors. An emergency will not be drawn for feature races of less than $20,000 unless otherwise approved by the Controlling Body.
A horse that is engaged as an emergency for the Final of a race may be granted a start in another race on the same day. If there is a scratching from the Final, such horse is required to contest the Final and will be scratched without penalty from the other race. Should such horse scratch from the Final, it will be deemed ineligible for the other race.
A horse that is engaged as an emergency in a feature race of higher stakemoney may be granted a start in a race of lesser stakemoney at the same meeting. If there is a scratching from the feature race, such horse is required to contest the feature race and will be scratched without penalty from the other race. Should such horse scratch from the feature race, it will be deemed ineligible for the other race.
A horse that is engaged as an emergency in a career penalty race may be granted a start in a restricted penalty or penalty free race with stakemoney up to $3,000 on the same day. If there is a scratching from the career penalty race, such horse is required to contest that race and will be scratched without penalty from the other race. Should such horse scratch from the career penalty race, it will be deemed ineligible for the other race.
A horse that is declared as an emergency in two or more heats/divisions of a race shall be deemed as a starter in the heat/division from which the earliest timed scratching was taken. Such horse shall then be automatically scratched from the other heat(s)/division(s). The trainer of such horse may not scratch from one heat(s)/division(s) in preference to another heat/division.
A horse that accepts for a Heat & Final Series will carry its class from acceptance time through to the Final. For example a C2 horse that wins its heat although becoming a C3 classed horse will be drawn as a C2 class in the Final.
A horse that receives a reduction in class after competing in a Heat will also carry its class from acceptance time through to the Final. Therefore such horse will NOT be eligible to drop in grade if it qualifies for the Final. For example a horse that competes as a C3 in a Heat that receives a reduction in class following a non winning performance during that heat will drop back to a C2 class horse but will be drawn as a C3 in the Final.
A horse that has been excluded from the draw competes in a Heat and is eligible to return back into the draw will have the opportunity to go back in the draw should such horse qualify for the Final
For full details of Heat and Final Conditions please refer below.
Pursuant to Rule 133 (1) & (2) every effort will be made to meet the above conditions, however the inclusion of any horse over another shall not be grounds for requesting a redraw, nor shall any liability of any nature be incurred by the RQ as a result of any error. In all cases the decision of the RQ Handicapping Panel will be final.
AUTOMATIC FIELD SELECTION SYSTEM
Fields for all meetings (except for Metropolitan meetings and other chosen feature events) are selected in accordance with the Queensland Automatic Field Selection System.
Horses will be awarded field selection points based on their finishing order in any race they contest. The amount of points awarded depends on the meeting type and tiered prizemoney level structure (Refer table below).
The point scores for each horse are calculated on points they have earned over their last five engagements. Of the five point scoring runs the worst point score is removed and the remaining four are accumulated to give the total point score. (See example below)
Date Track Place Points
06/09/2011 Albion Park Ballot 7
27/08/2011 Albion Park 11th 5 ← removed
19/08/2011 Gold Coast 7th 6
11/08/2011 Gold Coast 1st 11
02/08/2011 Albion Park 4th 8
A horse will be awarded 7 field selection points if it is balloted from a race selected using the Automatic Field Selection System. These ballot points are treated as a points scoring performance and will replace such horse's fifth previous points scoring performance. This will not be applicable under the following scenarios:
a) When a horse has an unfulfilled engagement;
b) When a horse is a late nomination;
c) When a horse is deemed ineligible at acceptance time;
d) When a horse is balloted from a race having gained a start in another race on the same day.
e) When a horse is balloted from a race having already been balloted from another race on the same day.
f) If the horse is declared an emergency but is scratched.
g) If the race is declared a 'no-race' or is abandoned.
h) When the race field selection is based from lowest to highest point score order.
i) When the total number of field selection points will decrease if seven (7) points are awarded, though,
1) Upon written application from a horses registered trainer, a horse's performance points are to be manually adjusted by RQ when its 5th last point scoring performance is higher than seven (7) points and it has received two (2) ballots for low points at two (2) consecutive meetings (Albion Park Saturday night, unfulfilled engagements, ineligible acceptances, deleted and abandoned races are not included).
2) In accordance with allocating race field selection points, manual adjustments cannot be made until the second consecutive meeting has been conducted.
Ballot points are to be credited to a horse's field selection points total after the running of the race meeting from which the horse has been balloted.
When a horse qualifies to race it will be initially allotted a points score of 28 points (4 'gifted' starts x 7 points). The points score of a newly qualified horse will then be calculated in the same manner as for a horse with a racing history, that is, by considering the horse's last five points scoring performances and discarding the least points scoring performance so that the total of the remaining four points scoring performances becomes the points score used in the Automatic Field Selection System.
In the event that a ballot is required from horses on the same point score as horses that have not yet had a race start (ie: 28 points), the horse which has not yet started will be considered as having 7 'gift' points at its last engagement which may provide the opportunity to gain a start over a horse which has only had one start but earned less than seven points at that start. (Refer example below)
First starter Horse with one start
7 Gift points 3 points at only race start
7 Gift points 7 Gift points
0 points 7 Gift points
28 points total 28 points total
In the above example the first starter will gain the run over the horse which has had only one race start considering the points at the last engagement (7 vs 3).
For all races selected in accordance with the Queensland Automatic Field Selection System, in the event of two or more horses being equal with the same points score, a count back will determine which horse gains a start, with preference given to the horse which earned the highest points at its last start. If both/all horses earned the same points, this procedure will be repeated through each previous start. If both/all horses cannot be separated, the computer will implement a random ballot to determine which horse/s gain a start.
A horse that has an engagement as a starter in a race at Acceptance Time for a given meeting will be deemed as having an Unfulfilled Engagement. Horses with an unfulfilled engagement will only be selected after horses without an engagement.
If a horse is nominated for two different meetings conducted on different days but acceptances close on the same day, the trainer may indicate that he is willing to start the horse on both days if circumstances permit. Should the horse gain a start in its preferred event it will be deemed as having an unfulfilled engagement when being considered for the other race meeting.
Fields for Metropolitan race meetings are selected by the RQ Field Selection Panel in accordance with the Race Field Selection Policy - Metropolitan Meetings. The Automatic Field Selection System and the unfulfilled engagement rule are not applicable.
RACE FIELD SELECTION POLICY METROPOLITAN MEETINGS
The best credentialed horses in every race will be selected with the RQ Handicapping Panel referring to the following horse performance information:
(All information assessed equally)
a) Current Figure Form (last 6 race starts)
b) Margins Beaten
c) Mile Rates
d) Class of Opposition
e) Class of Races
f) Positions In Running
g) Barrier Draws
h) Interference Received
The horses which in the opinion of the RQ Handicapping Panel have the best overall form based on the above criteria will be declared as starters in the field.
The unfulfilled engagement rule does not apply.
Multiple stable runners can be drawn as the only selection criteria is overall form.
Permission may be granted at the sole discretion of RQ for other Clubs to apply for these conditions on selected events.
ALL CARE BUT NO RESPONSIBILITY
Pursuant to Rule 133 (1) & (2) every effort will be made to meet the above conditions, however the inclusion of any horse over another shall not be grounds for requesting a redraw, nor shall any liability of any nature be incurred by RQ or any Club Official as a result of any error. In all cases the decision of the RQ Handicapping Panel will be final.
HEAT AND FINAL CONDITIONS
A race may be conducted as Heats, Semi-Finals and a Final, and may have a Consolation/s in conjunction therewith provided that:
i) The winners of the Heats, Semi-Finals, Final and Consolation/s shall incur Penalties in accordance with the Australian Handicapping Regulations.
ii) The Penalties for a win in a Heat and Semi-Final shall not apply in the Final or Consolation/s of the Event.
iii) The Penalties provided by these Regulations for a win in a Heat and/or Semi-Final shall apply in any race other than the Final or Consolation/s of the Event.
The number of horses which will qualify from each Heat/Semi Final shall depend upon the number of Heats/Semi-Finals conducted. In the event that horses finish in the same qualifying position, the fastest individual mile rate recorded in the heats will determine the qualifiers for the final/consolation.
Except where qualifiers are determined by a point score, horses that have already qualified for the Final shall be ineligible to contest further heats.
Should any qualified horse be unable to take its place in the Final/Consolation, RQ Handicappers may select at their discretion a replacement from the next best placed horse with the fastest mile rate in the Heats/Semi-Final becoming the qualifier, except where the qualifiers are determined by pointscore. (If two or more horses finish with equal mile rates a ballot will be performed by RQ Handicappers).
Horses which qualify for a Final/Consolation, shall be deemed acceptors for such Final/Consolation and shall be liable for any penalties if scratched.
In the event of any Heat or Semi-Final being abandoned the conduct of the final is to be at the discretion of RQ Officials. If it is decided to conduct the final RQ Handicappers shall select the final field based on point score order at acceptance time for the abandoned race (or manually based on form at acceptance time for the abandoned race for finals valued at $10,000 or higher) from the Final Acceptors of such Heat/Semi-Final, and such horses shall be deemed as a qualifier for the Final/Consolation. Notwithstanding that the conduct of such final is to be at the discretion of RQ.
The Barrier Draw conditions applicable to the Heats/Semi-Finals shall also apply to the Final/Consolation and not take into account winning performances during the Heats/Semi-Finals.
The Barrier Draw conditions for the Final/Consolation will NOT take into account Rule 17 of the Australian Handicapping Rules (Reductions In Class) - a horse will carry its assessment from acceptance time for the Heat through to the Final and if such horse has not won in 10 consecutive race starts after competing in a heat while its assessment will be reduced by one class it will draw as per its original assessment at time of acceptance for the Heat in the Final.
In the event of a Series where the winners progress to the Final and the Heats fall short for the number required for the Final, the remaining qualifier/s will be determined by RQ Handicappers based on horses finishing in the most forward position/s in the Heats.
PRELUDE - If there are insufficient acceptors for a Club to conduct Heats and/or Semi-Finals they may with the approval of the Controlling Body conduct a Prelude. Horses that win a "Prelude" remain eligible for the Final and its Barrier Draw will be determined at time of the "Acceptances for the Prelude". If a prelude is conducted trainers may be asked to RE-NOMINATE horses for the Final or be advised that acceptors for the Prelude will be automatic acceptors for the Final. If trainers are asked to re-nominate their horses for the Final such horses will have preference in race field selection.
In the event of Heats and/or Semi-Finals being conducted the RQ Handicappers will draw up the Final and a Consolation (if required).
Selection For Heats - If Ballots Are Required
(except for Futurity or Sales Funded events)
i) Horses that have already qualified for the Final shall be ineligible to contest further heats, unless otherwise specified in race conditions.
ii) Horses that have unfulfilled engagements (except for heats with finals where total prizemoney is in excess of $11,000) shall be the second ballot.
iii) Horses with the lowest race field selection points (except for heats with finals in excess of $11,000 where fields are to be selected manually) are to be the final ballots.
Additional Final Conditions
A Consolation of any Final can only be conducted when the event attracts sufficient acceptors for three (3) heats or more of eight (8) or more acceptors.
Finals shall carry prizemoney of a minimum of 50% more than the value of the heat. Consolations, when conducted shall carry a minimum of 10% more prizemoney than the value of the heat unless otherwise approved by the Controlling Body.
Futurity or Sales Funded events are exempt from these conditions.
The specified conditions of a race where the Heats are conducted in one State and the Final in another State must be approved by the Controlling Body of each of the States concerned.
Eligibility at Acceptance Times - Mobile and standing start events
Any horse that wins after acceptance time will remain eligible to fulfil its engagement.
Any horse that wins after acceptance will retain its barrier and handicap mark with the exception of Discretionary Handicap Events which will be left at the Handicappers discretion as to whether the horse should be re-handicapped.
In the event of a horse being 'out of the barrier draw' for the Heat/Semi-Final/Prelude, but being eligible for inclusion in the barrier draw for the final should it begin in a satisfactory manner in the Heat/Semi-Final/Prelude, the draw for the Final will re-include the horse in the draw.
In the event of a horse being made 'out of the barrier draw' in the Heat/Semi-Final/Prelude, the draw for the Final will exclude the horse in the draw.
If a horse has a reduction in class following a non winning performance in a Heat, such horse will be eligible for a drop back in class for the Final.
If a driver concession is claimed in a Heat/Semi-Final/Prelude it must also be claimed in the final, and should a horse not claim a driver concession in the Heat/Semi-Final/Prelude then no concession may be claimed in the Final.
A horses' eligibility for a race shall be determined by the Handicapper and/or Stewards. The eligibility of a horse entered into a race shall be determined as at the time acceptances close for such race.
In a race of any class, the term 'Mares' shall refer to and include Fillies & Mares and the term 'Entires and Geldings' shall refer to and include Colts, Entires, Geldings and Rigs.
Saturday (Open class)
Unless otherwise approved by RQ:
i. Albion Park & Gold Coast
a) All 2yo (MS & SS) - 10 starters
b) 3yo+ all distances (MS) - 11 starters
c) 3yo+ all distances (SS) - 12 starters
ii. At Redcliffe, a field limit of 10 starters in mobile races and 12 starters in standing start races will apply, except for races to the value of $20,000 or more where an emergency may be drawn.
iii. Toowoomba & Wide Bay a field limit of 8 starters in all races will apply.
iv. At Marburg a field limit of 8 will apply in all mobile start events and 10 in all standing start races.
Each track will have the following starting configuration from the particular start type:
Maximum starters on front row
SEEDED PREFERENTIAL BARRIER DRAWS
In mobile start races at Albion Park and Gold Coast, barriers are allocated in the following sequence - 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 9, 6, 7, 10, 11, 12 and 13.
In mobile start races at Redcliffe, barriers are allocated in the following sequence - 1, 2, 3, 4, 7, 8, 9, 5, 6, 10 and 11.
In mobile start races at Marburg, Toowoomba & Wide Bay barriers are allocated in the following sequence - 1, 2, 3, 6, 7, 4, 5, 8 and 9.
REDUCTIONS IN CLASS
Owners & Trainers are reminded that after ten non winning performances a horse will receive a reduction in class.
Horses can only go back in class to a C1, R1 and/or M1 and cannot drop back to a maiden. (C0, R0 or M0)
Horses that dead heat for first at their 10th non-winning performance will also receive a reduction in class.
Mobile start - Horses cannot be re-handicapped by RQ Handicappers
Standing start - Horses can only be re-handicapped by RQ Handicappers in Discretionary Handicap events and not in conditioned handicaps or races where handicaps are based on class.
Final scratchings close by 8.30am on the morning of each meeting. Emergencies will be withdrawn at this time if there have been no scratchings in the race. Trainers are reminded that it is their responsibility to ensure that should their horse be declared an emergency, they are required to ascertain whether their horse has been granted a start after the official scratching time.
Scratchings should be phoned in on the RQ Scratching Hotline
1800 331 308 or on 07 3869 9774. Scratchings can also be made on HarnessWeb prior to the scratching deadline.
i) Trainers Name
ii) Trainers Licence Number
iii) Meeting Details
iv) Horses Name
v) Reason for Scratching
If a horse is declared to race in a claiming race and is subsequently withdrawn from that event for veterinary reasons, at the time of its withdrawal, the trainer must submit a veterinary certificate stating the condition or injury, and/or any treatment or administration of medications which prevented it from starting.
The following criteria will apply to any withdrawal at all meetings:
a) No fee and stood down for 28 days, however this may be reviewed upon receipt of satisfactory documentation;
b) $35.00 and stood down for a minimum 6 days, however the time frame may be reviewed following acceptable veterinary evidence outlining the extent of the injury or illness and clearance will be required before this stand down period is reviewed;
c) $35.00 if scratched after the official scratching time (Late scratching);
d) Penalties or embargoes may apply for unacceptable scratchings. Circumstances may be considered on an individual basis.
The above scratching fees will apply to any horse which is withdrawn up until the time it enters the track for the race in which it is declared to run. It will not apply if a horse is withdrawn because it has been stood down, ineligible or scratched for acceptable reasons.
A horse engaged as an emergency can be scratched penalty free prior to 8.30am on the morning of the meeting, except as provided in Clause 5.
Notwithstanding the above, a horse that is declared to run in a race prior to accepting for a feature event to the value of $15,000 or more may scratch without penalty from the first engagement if declared to run in the upcoming feature event.
If a horse gains a start in a race it is the responsibility of the trainer to withdraw such horse from subsequent nominations before acceptance time if he/she does not want such horse to gain another start.
If after acceptance time a horse is scratched due to a change of ownership or trainer, such horse, upon notification of such transfer may be scratched both fee and penalty free.
On a race day where the forecast maximum temperature for the race meeting venue is determined by the Bureau of Meteorology to exceed thirty eight degrees Celsius (38ºC), the trainer of a horse engaged at that meeting may scratch the horse free of penalty prior to 8.30am on the day of the meeting. Scratchings effected after 8.30am on race day will attract the normal scratching penalty. Such applications may only be made on the day of the race. (Please refer below for full Racing in Hot Weather Policy).
RACING IN HOT WEATHER - POLICY
This policy is in place to protect the welfare of horses and participants and to minimize adverse effects on horses racing in hot weather at all tracks under the jurisdiction of Racing Queensland.
This policy applies to all barrier trial and race days where the forecast, or current temperature is thirty five degrees Celsius (35°C) or above.
The ongoing conduct of the race meeting shall at all times be subject to monitoring of conditions (ambient temperature, humidity and air movement) by the Stewards in consultation with the Veterinarian to ensure that the welfare of horses is protected.
Heat stress is occasionally seen in horses after racing in hot weather (most likely on days when the ambient temperature exceeds 35°C). In general, standardbreds race over relatively short distances and the amount of heat generated and body water lost is minimal compared to other endurance horses.
Heat stress after exercise is most likely to occur on days when both the ambient temperature and relative humidity are high and when wind speeds on air movement is low.
Horses cool themselves efficiently by evaporative cooling. As sweat and water molecules evaporate from the skin these molecules absorb and remove heat causing the horse to cool. When the ambient temperature and humidity are both high, the rate of transfer of heat from the horse's body is slowed and cooling is delayed, thus increasing the risk of heat stress.
Signs of heat stress include:
- rapid shallow breathing (panting)
- flared nostrils
- congested mucous membranes
- synchronous diaphragmatic flutter (Thumps)
- staggering gait/weakness
- agitated and distressed appearance
- irrational behavior such as lashing out with hind limbs
- occasional collapse
The following factors can adversely affect the hydration status of a horse and therefore its ability to cope with racing in hot weather:
- traveling long distances to the racecourse
- an excitable temperament
- heaving sweating
- younger horses may be less acclimatised to heat
- withholding of water or the administration of diuretics prior to racing
Treatment of heat stress may involve:
- enhancing evaporative cooling by repeating the cycle of applying cold water (hosing and ice water), scraping and walking in a shaded, breezy area.
- Administration of anti-inflammatory medication (dexamethasone or hydrocortisone).
- Intravenous or oral fluid therapy.
A horse may be nominated for a Claiming Race within the price indicated in the race conditions.
Claiming prices indicated for each horse are inclusive of GST.
To be eligible to nominate for a claiming race an Authority to Nominate in a Claiming Race form must be completed stating the name of the horse, minimum claiming price and the authority expiry date for the claim form. ALL owners must sign the form to be valid.
If an owner wishes to reduce the claiming price of a horse a new Claiming Authority Form must be completed and submitted to the Controlling Body.
A horse can be purchased or claimed at the nominated claiming price by fully completing a Claim Form, signed by all owners and lodging with payment to the Controlling Body or Acceptance Office at the race track no later than 15 minutes prior to the running of the claiming race. The name of the person collecting the horse must also be indicated on this form for the claim to be valid.
Payment for any claim must be by bank cheque or direct deposit only. For direct transfers please contact RQ for full details regarding direct deposit payments however it is requested if possible to organize the direct deposit on the day prior to the race so RQ can confirm the transferred money has reached the RQ bank account. Any claim may not be valid if it cannot be proven whether the deposit has reached the RQ bank account.
If multiple claims have been lodged for the same horse the Stewards will request a representative from each party to be present for a random draw.
In or with respect to a claiming race a person shall not claim directly or indirectly a horse owned, trained or driven by that person.
A horse claimed from a claiming race will be scratched from any other claiming race for which nominations have closed or acceptances have been taken, and therefore are ineligible to be claimed.
A horse claimed from a claiming event which is also engaged in an upcoming non claiming event may be permitted to start if the new trainer is happy to do so.
For 30 days after claiming, a horse is ineligible to start in a race for the owner or trainer who had the horse at time of claiming unless it is reclaimed out of another claiming race.
For full details on all rules relating to claiming races please refer to Australian Harness Racing Rules 72 to 77.
Drivers are Concession Drivers for six years from their initial attainment of a B Grade Drivers Licence.
Concession Drivers are eligible to take a claim for up to 40 wins per season with an additional 15 metropolitan wins (all races worth $11,000 or over) per season.
Allowable wins are capped at 200 for the term.
All wins count as a win.
Once a driver has outdriven their 40 wins allowable for the season, such driver will no longer be permitted to use a driver claim in any career class race for the remainder of the season
If a driver has driven 40 winners for the season and has driven less than 15 metropolitan wins for that season they will still be eligible to take a claim in metropolitan events (races worth $11,000 or more) until such time as they have driven 15 metropolitan winners.
Once a driver has outdriven their 200 wins allowable for the term, such driver will no longer be permitted to use a driver claim in any race for the remainder of their concession driver term.
Once a concession driver has outdriven their claim such driver must be replaced on all upcoming engagements where a claim has been used with the exception of later races on the meeting in which they had outdriven their claim.
In the event of a driver being suspended from driving in races for a period, such person may be permitted, upon application, to fulfill any drives for which they have been engaged if the driver declaration deadline for that meeting has passed.
Any driver who has been engaged for drives for a meeting at acceptance time, and is subsequently suspended before driver declaration deadline for that meeting, may not be permitted to fulfill those drives other than in exceptional circumstances approved by Stewards.
It is the suspended driver's responsibility to notify affected trainers if he/she is ineligible to drive.
A suspended driver may be eligible to drive in Qualifying and Official Trials, unless otherwise directed by the Stewards.
For all races at TAB meetings, the driver's fee is $40.
For all races at Non-TAB meetings, no driver's fees are applicable.
HORSES THAT HAVE RACED OVERSEAS
Any owner or trainer considering purchasing and/or importing a horse from overseas is advised to contact the RQ Handicapping Panel before purchasing/importing the horse. This will enable the horse's official handicapping assessment to be determined before committing to the purchase/importation.
Any alteration to gear for a horse with an upcoming racing engagement must be notified in writing or via HarnessWeb prior to Driver Notification time (Refer to 4.27) for such meeting as advertised in the Racing Queensland Magazine.
Gear changes notified after Driver Notification time must be approved by RQ Stewards.
Should a horse be presented to race with gear other than what has been notified a penalty may apply.
Cornell Collar - Stewards require a horse to trial with a Cornell Collar prior to approving this addition in gear.
Gear adjustments are to be made wherever possible before a horse enters the racetrack.
Trainers are reminded that the Clerks of the Course are only there to assist drivers whilst they make gear adjustments, and are not responsible for the application, or addition, of any gear to a horse. It is the responsibility of the trainer and/or driver to ensure the gear is properly fitted and secured.
Tongue Ties should be secured and spares carried by the driver. Tongue Ties will not be provided by officials at the start.
Stewards may order when deemed necessary the attachment of mudguards and splash sheets.
It is the trainers responsibility to have each horses brand clearly visible for identification purposes by keeping the area surrounding the brand clipped.
If any brand is not clearly visible or identifiable Stewards may order the horse be scratched from its engagement.
CHANGE OF TACTICS
AHR Rule 44 requires the connections of a horse intending to adopt tactics contrary to the horse's usual racing pattern to as soon as practicable notify the Stewards. Stewards may approve or disapprove the change of tactics.
To allow such information available to the public Stewards must be notified not later than 2 HOURS after the scratching deadline on the morning of the race. (Normally 10:30am)
Penalties may apply for failure to notify or late notification.
Trainers are required to notify RQ which set of colours are to be used on multiple stable runners by driver declaration time, as printed in the Racing Queensland Magazine.
Club colours may be placed on multiple stable runners at the discretion of RQ Handicappers if no contact is made. Penalties may apply for changes to colours after the deadline.
Club colours cannot be used in trials or pre race warm-ups.
A penalty may apply if advertised race colours are not available.
A fee may be applicable for the use of club colours.
RE-INCLUSION INTO BARRIER DRAW (ODM, ODS)
A horse seeking re-inclusion into the barrier draw is required to barrier trial at an Official Qualifying Trial or in a race on two consecutive occasions to the satisfaction of the Stewards before being re-instated in the barrier draw. It is preferable that at least one of these occasions be in a race start. Both trials/races cannot be performed on the same day.
Trainers can only apply to have their horse re-included into the barrier draw either at the races or when it trials and must sign the appropriate documentation prior to re-inclusion. Applications for re-inclusion into the barrier draw may only be accepted by Stewards. Applications by phone are NOT accepted.
To be deemed a satisfactory start:
a) Mobile Start - A horse must score up and be in its correct barrier position at the candy pole to the starting point, then negotiate the first 200 metres without losing gait or rhythm.
b) Standing Start - A horse must not delay the start through intractability. It must begin at its correct gait and then negotiate the first 200 metres without losing gait or rhythm.
When a trainer is unable to be in attendance at a race meeting where a horse trained by them is competing, a trainers authority form must be completed in accordance with Rule 119A (1) and handed to the Stewards at the race meeting.
Failure to complete this requirement may result in action being taken under Rule 119A (3)
These forms are available from the Controlling Body, Stewards and the Acceptance Office at each race club.
SECTIONAL TIMES POLICY
The first half of the last mile is to be covered equal to or quicker than the times listed in the below table:
# 2yo's are exempt from sectional times in any 2YO ONLY race except in 2YO Metropolitan events.
* Weather is inclement weather where the Stewards have ordered the use of mud guards/splash sheets in races.
Note: In the case of Graduation Penalty bearing races ONLY, a one (1) second increase in the standard sectional time allowance is to apply.
Failure to comply with Sectional Times is to be actioned by Racing Queensland Stewards under Rule 162 (1) (y). The following penalties are to apply on the first occasion for failure to comply:
i) $50 up to one (1) second above the time as described above
ii) $100 between one (1) and two (2) seconds above the time as described above
iii) $150 between two (2) and three (3) seconds above the time as described above
iv) At the Stewards discretion if in excess of three (3) seconds above the time as described above
Failure to comply with Sectional Times on multiple occasions within one (1) month of the previous offence is to incur the following additional penalties:
a) 2nd offence, as stipulated in Clause 29.2, plus $100
b) 3rd offence, as stipulated in Clause 29.2, plus $200
c) 4th offence at the Stewards discretion
Drivers are reminded Rule 162 (1) (u) & (x) deals with reducing speed and excessively slow pace. Stewards may at times deem a driver in breach of this rule regardless of what section of the race the said excessively slow pace is run.
A driver shall only use an approved whip in accordance with Rule 156(A)
A driver shall hold a rein in each hand at all times unless adjusting approved gear or driving in the final 200 metres of a race.
A driver shall not use a whip excessively. Examples of excessive whip use include:-
a. If the tip of the whip is drawn back further than the drivers shoulder
b. If the whip action involves more than a wrist or elbow action
c. If the reins are lengthened so as to result in loose reining
d. If the whip is used other than in a flicking motion.
The whip is only to be used in a manner as required by the above method and only to encourage the animal. Severe penalties may apply for any animal welfare issues.
Drivers are not permitted to carry the whip over their shoulder. A whip may only be carried in a forward position or under the drivers' armpit.
Drivers are advised that unless there is clear evidence of gear breaking during the score-up, a driver will not be permitted to use a gear malfunction as an excuse to alert the Starter. Evidence of any broken gear must be verified by the Starter or the Stewards. Penalties may apply for unacceptable excuses.
Should the same horse cause a false start on two separate occasions, it will be withdrawn from the race.
WALK UP STARTS
In the event that the mobile barrier malfunctioned, or the conditions are too wet for it to gain traction, walk-up starts are not to be permitted under any circumstances for any harness race held within the jurisdiction of RQ.
GUIDELINES FOR HORSES EXPERIENCING CARDIAC ARRHYTHMIA POST-RACE OR TRIAL (RQ - HARNESS)
A horse experiencing cardiac arrhythmia during a post-race or post-trial examination shall not start in any race or trial until the Stewards have received a satisfactory veterinary report. The report must include the results of an ECG performed at rest and cardiac auscultation performed within 30 minutes of completing a satisfactory piece of work of at least 1609 m. Prior to starting in any race, the horse must then perform to the satisfaction of the Stewards in an official trial of not less than 1609 m.
A horse experiencing cardiac arrhythmia during a post-race or post-trial examination, for a second time within a 12 month period, must be subject to examination by a veterinarian with specialist qualifications in equine internal medicine or veterinary cardiology, prior to it starting in any race or trial. The examination should include echocardiography (cardiac ultrasonography), electrocardiography (ECG) at rest and at exercise and any other examination that the examining veterinarian requests. Prior to starting in any race, and pending Stewards receiving a satisfactory veterinary report from the specialist examination, such horses must trial to the satisfaction of Stewards in an official trial of at least 1609 meters and have a satisfactory veterinary report from the race day veterinarian. The veterinary report from the race day veterinary must include the results of cardiac auscultation within 30 minutes of completion of the official trial.
A horse experiencing cardiac arrhythmia during a post-race or post-trial examination, for a third time, will be ineligible to race or trial unless otherwise determined by the Stewards.
NOTIFICATION OF CONDITION AND TREATMENT OF A HORSE
In accordance with Rule 188 (A) (4) "Notification of Condition and Treatment" forms are available for horses treated within the preceding seven (7) days and require a trainer to notify:
i) The horse's condition for which it was treated;
ii) Treatment administered;
iii) The date of the last administration of treatment;
iv) Person who administered the last treatment.
This notification must be submitted to the Stewards or the Official Veterinary Surgeon no later than 1 hour prior to the scheduled starting time of the race.
Australian Harness Racing Rule 190B requires trainers to maintain a log book:-
i) listing all therapeutic substances in his or her possession.
ii) recording all details of treatment administered to a horse in his or her possession.
To ensure compliance a trainer may be required to produce such log book for inspection. This log book must be up to date.
Licensed persons are reminded that they are expected to maintain an appropriate level of attire at all times whilst attending race meetings regardless of whether they have a horse engaged to race. This includes suitable footwear, which provides safe and adequate protection.
Failure to adhere to these requirements may lead to action being taken by the Stewards.
The Dress Regulations for licencees are as follows:
Shorts shall NOT be worn at meetings held on Friday and Saturday nights.
The following attire is deemed UNACCEPTABLE:
Trainers, stablehands and drivers (other than when in their racing attire) are required to comply with this policy.
FAILURE TO COMPLY
Licencees that fail to adhere to the requirements of this policy may be denied access to restricted areas as deemed by RQ, and/or be penalised under AHR Rule 238.
Admission to the stabling areas at each track is restricted to officials, staff, participating licencees and accredited owners accompanied by a trainer.
Licensees are reminded that they are required to display their licence when requested for approval to enter the restricted area.
Security staff will remove or refuse entry to any unauthorised person(s) in the area.