16 March 2003

New panel for safer racing - Sun Herald

16 March 2003 -- AFTER a rash of horrific race falls, Racing NSW stewards have formed a Riders' Advisory Panel designed to help young jockeys become better riders.
The panel will aim to correct mistakes and errors of judgment by apprentices and inexperienced riders, under the guidance of high-profile members.
"We believe this is a stepping stone to helping young riders move up the ranks by receiving advice as to how and why a certain incident may have happened and how to prevent it in the future," said Racing NSW chairman of stewards Ray Murrihy.
"Once one of our stewards pinpoints an error with a youngster's riding which needs to be addressed, we will then refer the rider in the company of their master to the panel for corrective advice.
"We have been discussing this at length with the NSW Jockeys' Association and, at this stage, members would include Malcolm Fitzgerald [Racing NSW apprentice Mentor], jockeys like Darren Beadman, and even some former riders.
"It is an exciting initiative and is likely to be much less traumatic for a youngster than having to face a panel of stewards."
Paul Innes, secretary of the NSW Jockeys' Association, welcomed the panels implementation.
"This is an excellent initiative... it will go a long way to improving safety in our sport."

-- Michael Hutak

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