Appeal from the Order of the Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission in case of In Re: Ronald D. Smith, No. 79-087.
Bruce E. Cooper, for petitioner.
Bart J. DeLuca, Jr., Deputy Attorney General, with him Allen C. Warshaw, Deputy Attorney General, Harvey Bartle, III, Attorney General, for respondent.
President Judge Crumlish, Jr. and Judges MacPhail and Doyle, sitting as panel of three. Opinion by President Judge Crumlish, Jr. Dissenting Opinion by Judge Doyle.
[ 72 Pa. Commw. Page 422]
The Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission (Commission), by order, suspended Donald Smith for thirty days.*fn1 He appeals. We affirm.
The basic facts are not in dispute. Smith's mount, Stoic Link, while being put in the starting gate began rearing and acting up. An assistant starter put Stoic Link's head into the gate, but Smith and the starter signaled that they were not ready to start the race. Nonetheless, the race began with Smith's horse rearing slightly and veering right upon leaving the gate. Smith fought to control her, but was unable to do so until the field was approximately 20 lengths ahead of
[ 72 Pa. Commw. Page 423]
him. He finished the race at a gallop, making no serious effort to catch the field.
The Commission concluded that this failure to urge his horse on, even in the face of certain defeat, constituted a violation of two Commission rules which provide:
All horses shall be ridden out in every race. No jockey shall intentionally ride wide on the turns or otherwise cause his or her mount to lose ground when there is no reasonable cause for such loss or otherwise ride in a ...