After a great deal of pressure, the British Horseracing Authority announced on Friday, October 21 that it has eased its controversial new rule which limits when and how many times a jockey can strike his/her mount during the course of a race
A report by Reuters states that the BHA has retained the aspect of the whipping rule which limits the amount of times a jockey can strike his/her horse in a thoroughbred race to seven (eight for 'jump' racing).
The part of the rule which had caused much of the uproar was the BHA limiting the amount of times a jockey could use the whip on his/her mount in the final furlong of a race to five. That aspect of the rule has been removed.
As a result of the BHA tweaking the rule, jockey Richard Hughes, who handed in his rider's license in protest to the measure, has announced that he will return to racing.
Another change to the rule is that jockeys that violate the rule will only lose their rider's percentage if they are banned more than seven days for a whipping infraction in the race in question.
In light of the rule adjustment, jockey Christophe Soumillon will receive his £52,000 percentage for his victorious ride aboard Cirrus Des Aigles in the QIPCO Champion Stakes at Ascot last weekend. The BHA had denied Soumillon the percentage and handed him a riding suspension instead after he hit his mount six times in the final furlong of the contest.