Horse races in the UK and Ireland are run by what are known as race stewards. These effectively act as the referees of a race and ensure each event is run safely and fairly.
But often new punters to the world of horse racing betting won’t need to worry about stewards until a stewards’ enquiry is called. Knowing what is a stewards’ enquiry can help you spot when one might be needed, and how it could impact on your bets.
And so, Paddy Power is here to bring you everything you need to know about stewards’ enquiries, why they exist and how your horse racing bets can be affected by decisions made after a race.
WELCOME TO PADDY POWER NEWS!
What is a stewards’ enquiry?
As we detailed in our guide to race stewards in horse racing, the point of the stewards is to officiate the race and ensure it is carried out in safety. Unfortunately, sometimes jockeys push the rules a little bit too far and their riding can impact the safety of the other runners, and in some cases also amount to unfair racing.
Stewards have the right to mount an enquiry into the race if they deem a jockey of:
- Improper riding – such as overuse of whip
- Careless riding – such as interfering with other horses or riding dangerously
Stewards can deliver punishments to jockeys and/or horses after said race if they are found to have breached the rules. If the stewards believe there has been an infringement to the Rules of Racing, they can call an enquiry. Here, the jockey and trainer of the horses in question, as well as sometimes other connections, meet the stewards to discuss an incident with the race.
This incident could be unfair riding that prevented another horse from finishing as it should, or it could be a question as to why a jockey or horse didn’t appear to be racing at maximum effort.
Back in 2022 jockey Paddy Brennan came to rival Tommy O’Brien’s defence when the stewards looked at a clash between the pair. Brennan conceded the race but won the admiration of the racing public.
How a stewards’ enquiry works
Once the stewards have heard from the relevant parties regarding an incident they are investigating, they then need to determine whether the enquiry is upheld, and any resulting punishment.
The stewards have the power to expunge a runner from the race if they deem the jockey or horse to have breached the rules. This means that they are stricken from the official results, which can alter who won and placed.
A jockey can also be suspended from future races if they are deemed to have severely broken the rules. Usually the result of an enquiry is announced within 15 minutes of the race finishing. However, this time period can sometimes be extended, depending on the supposed infringement.
Do I get paid after a steward’s enquiry?
At Paddy Power, yes. We pay out for what’s called a Double Result. This means if your horse is first past the post you get paid, however, should your horse be awarded the race or promoted to a place, as a result of a stewards enquiry or an objection which is announced before the ‘weigh in’ or ‘winner alright’, Paddy Power will still pay you.
- Why are there false starts in horse races like the Grand National?
- How many horses are there in the Grand National?
- Grand National prize money: How much does the Grand National winner get?
- 9 things to consider when picking a Grand National winner
- Grand National fence names and the stories behind every Aintree jump
- How high are Grand National fences at Aintree Racecourse?
- What are Grand National fences made of at Aintree Racecourse?
- Grand National fences: Order of jumps, total and which are taken twice
- Grand National weights: Why do horses carry different weights at Aintree?
- How many people usually attend the Grand National? What is Aintree’s capacity?
- What is the distance of the Grand National? How far do the horses run?
- How does a horse qualify for the Grand National?
- When did a horse last win the Grand National carrying top weight?
- Do Grand National reserve horses ever run in the race at Aintree?
- What does it mean when a horse is On the Bridle?
- What is a Black type horse race?
- What are the different types of going in horse racing?
- What is a bumper horse race?
- What are blinkers and why do some horses wear them?
- What is an Allowance Race in horse racing?
- What is the difference between hurdles and fences in National Hunt racing?
- What is a halter and why do some horses wear them?
- What does it mean when a horse has spread a plate?
- What is the Rule 4 betting rule in horse racing?
- What is the difference between graded, handicap and selling horse races?
- What does a novice hurdle in horse racing mean?
- What is a listed horse race?
- What does a novice chase in horse racing mean?
- Why do race horses have different ratings and what do they mean?
- When does the National Hunt season start and when does it end?
- Why are there different grades of horse race?
- Why are there 3 different types of National Hunt race?
- Why are race horses given different weights and what does it mean?
- How many different classes of horse race are there?
- What is a claiming race and what do they mean?
- What is an optional claimer in horse racing?
- What is a shadow roll and why do some race horses wear them?
- Why do some races start from stalls and some not?
- What is the difference between Derby and Oaks races?
- What does it mean when a horse knuckles during a horse race?
- What is a stayer in horse racing?
- What is a yearling horse and when are they ready to race?
- What does it mean if a horse has won a point race?
- What does a maiden mean in horse racing?
- How are horses’ ages calculated and why is it not the same as humans?
- What advantages do apprentice jockeys get when riding against professionals?
- What is a conditional jockey?
- What does the term ‘connections’ mean in horse racing?
- Why do some horses wear cheekpieces?
- Who are the stewards in horse racing?
- What does ‘weighed in’ mean at the end of a horse race?
- What is a nursery race?
- Why are some National Hunt races run without fences?
- Why are some horses given a tongue tie during races?
- What does it mean when a horse is ‘pushed out’?
- How are horse racing ratings calculated?
- What does it mean when a horse has a ‘wind operation’?
- How high are the fences and hurdles in horse racing?
- What is an apprentice jockey?
- What is a Bull Ring in horse racing?
- What does the phrase ‘Look of Eagles’ mean in horse racing?
- Why do some horses wear a ‘weight cloth’ during races?
- What is the Triple Crown in horse racing?
- What is a Steeplechase race in horse racing?
- How high are the Cheltenham Festival fences and hurdles?
- Why is the Champion Chase named after the Queen Mother?
- Why does Cheltenham racecourse have an Old Course and a New Course? What’s the differences between the two?
- What is the Cheltenham roar? What difference does it make in races?
- Why are there no jumps in the Cheltenham Festival Champion Bumper?
- How many fans usually attend the Cheltenham Festival? How big is the capacity?
- What is a juvenile in horse racing?
- What is a sire and a dam? Why is breeding so important in horse racing?
- What’s the difference between a colt, filly, gelding, stallion and mare?
- What does it mean when a horse goes to stud?
- What do horse racing commentators mean by sectional times?
- What is the Royal Procession at Royal Ascot? Which members of the Royal Family attend?
- How do they choose Epsom Derby stall numbers? Is there a draw bias?
- How long does it take horses to complete the Epsom Derby? How fast are the runners?
- What has happened to the Queen’s racehorses?
- What is a stewards’ enquiry in horse racing?
- What does it mean when a horse is exposed?
- What happens when there is a dead-heat in horse racing?
- What does the Clerk of the Course do in horse racing?
- What does schooling mean in horse racing?
- How are horses named and who approves them?
- Men must wear socks and other weird Royal Ascot dress codes
- Market movers: What is a market mover in horse racing?
- What is a Ladies’ Day in horse racing and why do they exist?
- Where’s the toilet and how much is a beer – Paddy’s guide to Cheltenham
- How many horse racing courses are there in the UK? Full list
- Top 8 most famous race horses of all time
- 8 of the best retired UK and Irish jockeys