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New Whipping Rules At Pompano

Published: September 2, 2008 5:00 pm ET

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According to a report, in readying for its 45th season of live racing, Pompano Park has introduced new track rules regarding whipping.

According to the Harness Tracks of America daily newsletter, as of September 12 at Pompano drivers and trainers will be prohibited at all times from taking the lines in one hand and whipping, or reaching back to whip with their whip hand behind their head or hips.

The HTA report states that the rules will apply in races, non-wagering events, qualifying races, and warming up.

"We're very pleased to be the first track in North America to implement these new rules," the HTA report quotes Michael Bloom, 'The Isle's' vice president / general manager, as saying. "We know our drivers will abide by them and we hope to become the model for all horse tracks to follow."

The report goes on to state that penalties will be $100 for the first offense, $250 and five-day suspension for a second, and possible denial of all racing privileges and ejection from the grounds for multiple offenses.

The same penalties will be enforced for striking a horse below the shafts of the sulky, and excessive whipping at any point in a race will subject the offender to fines of up to $1,000 and possible suspension or ejection.

Pompano says the whipping issue was first brought to its attention by leaders of the Florida Standardbred Breeders and Owners Association, and the new rules have been endorsed by leading drivers at the track.

(With files from the HTA)

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