The British Horseracing Authority (BHA) has confirmed the members of its ‘Judicial Panel’ to keep oversight of disciplinary affairs, appeals, and licensing disputes. 

The panel has been reformed following last year’s departure of Chair Brian Baker (CBE), who was succeeded by sports law expert Sarah Crowther KC.

Crowther and the BHA have undertaken a comprehensive consultation with diverse stakeholders to change the panel’s framework and composition.

The BHA detailed that it had reviewed over 100 applicants, who were assessed on several competencies, including independence, judicial and decision-making skills, and knowledge of horse racing and equine welfare.

As such, the Judicial Panel will be led by Crowther KC, with the support of former Kent circuit court judge, HH James O’Mahony as Deputy Chair. 

The appeals board for UK racing will be overseen by Rt. Hon. Sir Gary Hickinbottom, who has formally served as Judicial Chair for British Wrestling and the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA). 

Hickinbottom will be supported by sports law barrister Susan Ahern and retired Judge and former racehorse owner HH Clement Goldstone KC.

UK racing’s reformed judicial panel will be made up of 25 members providing expert guidance on diverse affairs related to sports law, governance, and the administration of rules and technical procedures for UK racing. 

In its remit, the panel can hold inquiries related to concerns and issues impacting UK racing and where appropriate, can make recommendations and impose penalties for breaches of the Rules of Racing.

Crowther KC, commented: “I am delighted that we have been able to appoint Panel members in all roles who not only possess those skills in abundance, but also reflect the range of viewpoints and values of the industry and the wider public which the panel serves.”

“I welcome the successful candidates to the Panel and congratulate them on their appointments. I look forward to working alongside them to continue the work of the Judicial Panel as the independent tribunal for horse racing in Great Britain. 

“May I finally take a brief opportunity to thank the current members of the panel whose appointments will come to an end next month for their service to the panel and the industry.”

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