Life & Culture

Panel told Dunne’s treatment of Frost reflected ‘rancid’ weighing-room culture | Horse racing

The three-person disciplinary hearing in the case in which Robbie Dunn was accused of bullying and harassing fellow jockey Bryony Frost over seven months in 2020, was postponed on Wednesday to consider its decision, after she was told by Lewis Weston QC, who represents the horse racing authority. British, that the case highlighted a “sour and rotten” weight room culture that must be “discarded and disposed of”.

Weston was giving his closing statement to the committee on the fifth day of the hearing, and sought to present Dunn’s behavior towards Frost on a number of occasions between February and September of last year as part of a pattern of bullying behaviour.

“It is unacceptable that this sport continues,” Weston said. “It is inconceivable that Miss Frost should be allowed to compete on a racetrack on a level playing field, only to find her when she returns to the weight room where she met Mr. himself for “Weighing Room Traditions”.

Weston said an incident at Southwell Racecourse in September 2020, when Frost said Dunn “promised to hurt her” by “putting her on a wing” at a future race, was “the culmination of Mr Dunn’s behavior over months and years”, of a “tantrum”. for one time”. He also suggested a tweet by Dunn that apparently mocked Frost’s post-race interviews, which was published in April 2020, showed he had been targeting the rider for several months.

When Weston also highlighted an incident in Stratford in July 2020, when Dunn was seen walking towards Frost and apparently protesting with her, she allegedly directed a torrent of misogynistic abuse.

“If there is a weight room culture that allows jockeys to threaten grievous injury to another or their horse, or to call another whore, slut, and malice, that culture is rotten, and rotten, and we must say it must be disposed of,” Weston said. Its time has passed.”

Summarizing the defense’s case, Roderick Moore suggested that the BHA’s decision to charge Dunne with a seven-month series of incidents of alleged bullying and harassment had led to a situation like “a jigsaw puzzle with many pieces missing,” that “when I look at the bigger picture, it doesn’t make sense.” she has “.

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He told the commission that six riders interviewed by the NHS while investigating Frost’s complaint “did not substantiate” her allegations against Dunn “in any meaningful sense”.

He also suggested that for the committee “to arrive at the correct answer” it would be “necessary to understand the weighing room”.

Moore said, “It’s hard to imagine a sport that is more rigorous and dangerous. The weighing room has a culture I’ve heard so much about now, from a number of witnesses.” [including current and former jockeys].

“the master [Tom] Scudamore, Mr [Nico] De Boinville and Mr. [Richard] Johnson is a very respectable and impressive person. They gave their opinion of the things that happen in the weight room. It’s a dangerous sport and they have to tell each other if they think there is a danger, including the way they think one of their teammates is riding. That’s what’s happening and it has to happen to keep them all as safe as possible.”

Moore added, “If something needs to change, it’s for the future. This is a political issue, a political issue. You can only judge Mr. Dunn against the current weight room.”

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