Harness Drivers in New Zealand Can No Longer Bet On Races They Compete In

New Zealand gambling laws - GamingZion

New betting regulation was introduced in New Zealand, which prevents harness drivers from betting on races they participate in.

The old school name of the harness racing sport in New Zealand is trotting and it originated back in 1864. Harness racing in New Zealand includes both pacing and trotting competitions for Standard bred racehorses.

There are several major harness racing competitions in the country, the most important of which is the New Zealand Trotting Cup. Other significant races include the Auckland Trotting Cup, the Noel J Taylor Memorial Mile and the New Zealand Messenger Championship, for four year olds.

The Harness Jewels raceday, which is the end-of year championships for two, three and four year olds, takes place in end of May or beginning of June, which are all major events for bet on sports in New Zealand bet on sports in New Zealand.

The Inter Dominion is a very special event, which is the annual series that takes place between New Zealand and Australia. The series includes both pacing and trotting series, and it is held yearly and rotated around the Australian State Controlling Bodies, and once every four years the Inter Dominion Championships take place in New Zealand.

The ban

According to the latest New Zealand gambling laws, harness racing drivers won’t be allowed to place bets on races they are competing in.

Apparently, thoroughbred racing executives are going even further, planning to ban jockeys in general from all forms of betting.

This new betting rules for drivers will be valid starting this week and they will also apply to reinsmen, who won’t be allowed to bet if they are wearing their driving gear.

The more extreme change for jockeys isn’t finalized yet, but currently the plan is when the riders have to renew their licenses on August 1st, one condition for being eligible for it, to be the ban on any galloping races wagering in New Zealand.

Executives’ support

Edward Rennell, Harness Racing New Zealand’s chief executive, commented that everyone, including the drivers’ and trainers’ associations, decided that the betting ban was compulsory, so that the integrity of the sport can be preserved.

Harness drivers won’t be allowed to place bets on races they are competing in, according to the latest New Zealand regulation

• Harness races in New Zealand originated back in 1864

• There is a possibility of complete ban on jockeys, who won’t be able to practice any forms of betting

• Racing executives support the new regulations

Rennell stressed on the fact that despite the lack of any serious drivers’ betting problem in the past, the ban is aiming at keeping the reputation of the sport in front of the fans, as clean as possible.
He added that the New Zealand Racing Board requested from the HRNZ to review the rule in 2013, when bettors had expressed their concerns and the problem was also discussed during the annual conference of clubs in July 2013.

The proposal wasn’t supported by the necessary majority, therefore a working group was created, which included various experts like Nigel McIntyre, co-chief stipendiary stewards; Rob Lawson, trainers’ rep and Peter Ferguson, drivers’ rep, whose recommendations were accepted.

Rennell explained that the group agreed that racing should follow the same regulations as other sports, where players are not allowed to bet on games they are participate in, but didn’t recommend more severe measures.

Further regulations

Greg Purcell, New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing chief executive, commented that the potential ban of jockeys’ betting on all gallops races would place New Zealand at the same place as other racing jurisdictions throughout the world.

He explained that especially now when the revenues from foreign bettors in New Zealand are much higher, it was more than necessary that both the perception and reality of racing’s integrity was flawless.

Moreover: “Last year more was bet in Australia on New Zealand racing than we bet here,” referring to the NZRB’s earnings of $20 million, $9.8 million of which from thoroughbred races.

Purcell added that after the primary stage of the consultations few months ago, an amended draft regulation is currently going over different legal analysis, before is it distributed among various industry bodies in the following weeks.

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