Judicial panel chairman starts search for members
How would you fancy becoming a member of racing's judiciary? The opportunity presented itself on Friday when Brian Barker QC, the newly appointed judicial panel chairman at the BHA, started his search for new disciplinary and licensing panel members.
The search is the latest consequence of the recommendations from the Quinlan review that the BHA has carried out, following on from Barker's appointment in December of last year.
Quinlan, whose report was commissioned in the wake of the BHA's mishandling of the Jim Best case, recommended that more former jockeys and trainers be involved in disciplinary panels, and they, in particular, have been encouraged to apply for the new roles.
Barker has gone further, however, embracing Quinlan's suggestion that "a more diverse membership" of the judiciary should be sought. As such, "any suitably-qualified people with horse racing knowledge" are invited to apply to become members of the panels, regardless of their professional background. Panel chairmen, meanwhile, are expected to be legally qualified.
Disciplinary panel members act as racing's judges, holding inquiries under the rules of racing, hearing appeals against racecourse decisions and, when guilty verdicts are returned, imposing penalties including fines and bans.
Barker said in a statement: "My first priority, having been appointed as judicial panel chairman, is to recruit an enhanced and skilled disciplinary and licensing panel.
"Former jockeys, trainers and others connected with the sport could make a significant addition to the disciplinary and licensing Panel. They are well placed to understand the nuances and intricacies of a sport in which they have played an active part."
All prospective candidates have until February 24 to apply for roles that will be offered as an initial three-year contract.