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Management Rules    Rules Governing Track & Equipment    General Racing Rules    Officials    Championship Rules    Additional Rules for Bend Racing    Additional Rules for Team Racing    Grievance Procedure

The British Whippet Racing Association was formed at a meeting at the Golden Lion Hotel, Highroad Well, Halifax on Saturday June 3rd 1967.

 Management Rules Return to Top

  1. That this body be known as “The British Whippet Racing Association”.

  2. The aims of the Association shall be to promote greater friendship and understanding between the Whippet racing clubs; to give greater strength to the advancement of the sport to help clubs dealings with local councils in negotiation for land; and to control and standardise Whippet racing.

  3. Club and Membership fees shall be paid to the Association from January 1st in each year. All fees to be reviewed annually. Family membership to include children up to and including 16 years of age.

  4. Memberships not renewed by 1st March will be liable to an extra levy. This does not apply to new members joining during the year.

  5. No memberships or registrations will be accepted between 31st October and the AGM to allow for the balancing and auditing of the Association finances.

  6. Any person applying for membership must belong to an affiliated whippet racing club, and any fees must be paid through the club, the club Representative must pay all such monies to their Regional Secretary who must then send it to the National Registrar.

  7. If an Association members subscription lapses with his club, then he/she shall not be entitled to race in BWRA events.

  8. The affairs of the Association shall be governed by the following officials: President, one Vice President from each Region, Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer, Registrar, and two of three named representatives from each Region who shall make up the National Committee.

  9. The Executive Committee consisting of the President, Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer and Registrar shall not be allowed to serve on Regional committees.

  10. Each official of the Association and two of the Regional representatives shall have one vote each at National Committee Meetings. The Whippet News is allowed one vote at the discretion of the National Committee.

  11. No interchanging of Regional delegates allowed except at the discretion of the National Committee.

  12. All officials at both National and Regional level, including Regional delegates, must be members of the BWRA for the protection of all involved.

  13. All proposals and nominations for the election of officers of the Association must be in the hands of the Secretary not less than 28 days before the Annual General Meeting.

  14. The Association shall be responsible for the setting up of a register of whippets, the fee for such registration being for each whippet for life.

  15. The first name of a whippet which is registered with the Association must remain for the life of the whippet. Once a dog is registered no alteration can be made, either to form or card.

  16. When a registered whippet is transferred from one owner to a new owner, then a transfer fee shall be paid to the Association. The registration certificate must also be forwarded to the Registrar. In the event of card being lost, a new card must be bought before the dog can be transferred.

  17. A member of the Association can register with the BWRA his/her choice of Prefix/Suffix for a fee.

  18. All registrations and new memberships must have been received by the National Registrar at least 28 days before all Championship events (Bend, Straight and Puppy/Yearling) for a dog to be eligible to run. Existing memberships must have been renewed before the event.

  19.  A member may not change club or Region affiliation in mid season unless there is a permanent change of address to the satisfaction of the Committee.

  20. Ungentlemanly conduct, gambling and obscene language will not be tolerated.

  21. Any member of the Association who may be barred by their Region is to be banned from all BWRA events. He/she may appeal to the National Committee.

  22. An extraordinary General Meeting can be called on the signed request of 50 registered members, but at not less then 1 months notice. 40 of signees to attend.

  23. The Association deny any liability for any loss, or damage incurred, or and injury received at their events.

  24. Any circumstances arising not covered by the rules at present, shall be dealt with; (a) by the Clerk of the Course after consulting the 3 named stewards; (b) by the National Committee.

  25. The Committee shall be the sole authority for the interpretation of these rules, and anyone joining the Association shall abide by the Committee’s interpretation on any matter affecting the Association. This shall be final and binding on the members.

  26. No member of the National Committee shall be liable for prosecution for administering the rules of the Association. (No violence will be tolerated).

  27. Voting on proposals for changes to rules is allowed each year and should be by Postal Vote. Proposals are to be put in writing to the secretary to be received 7 days before the last committee meeting prior to the AGM. After the committee meeting each member will be sent a numbered voting paper with the proposals on it and space by each one for him/her to record his/her vote. This should then be returned to the National Secretary who may make random checks. The voting forms are sent out via the Regional Secretaries to distribute. The onus is on each member to ensure that any change of address has been advised to their club and Regional secretaries. Minimum voting age limit is 16 years.

  28. Proposal, Postal Votes to be kept in for 1 year.

Rules Governing Track & Equipment Return to Top

  1. Traps with doors of the up and over type, to be numbered 1 to 5 from the left looking up the track, in yrds/lbs racing not less then 9 and no more than 12 inches apart, in Scratch Racing traps to be 9 inches apart.

  2. All traps used in BWRA events to be of a standard type i.e. fronts should not be partially blocked permanently.

  3. All trap floors to be standardised i.e. no slats, floors to be made of non slip rubber matting.

  4. A handler may block off part of a trap front and/or use a springboard at the discretion of the trap man. It is the responsibility of the handler that said equipment be of proper type, that it does not interfere with the operation of the traps, and that it is removed before the next race.

  5. At all BWRA Events numbered and coloured racing jackets shall be worn by all whippets. Handlers to supply and be responsible for colour and condition of said jackets.

  6. The type of Lure used shall be at the discretion of the Clerk of the Course.

  7. No live incentive will be allowed at the Associations race meetings.

  8. The Lure shall be placed 1 yard in front of the middle trap, when all traps are on scratch.

  9. The Lure shall be no more than 10 yards in front of the traps when the traps are released, when all the traps are on scratch.

  10. The starter judge’s flag to be raised when the lure operator indicates “ready”.

  11. All members and spectators shall not be permitted within 25 yards of the traps and the traps to be roped off.

  12. When a mechanical failure, or any circumstance occurs, detrimental to the performance of any dog in the race, the race shall be re-run, at the judges’ discretion.

  13. Any dog(s) whose trap does not open shall have an equalising run immediately after the race.

  14. The track to be roped or coned off at all National events.

General Racing Rules Return to Top

  1. Whippets are to be whippet like in appearance and recognisable as a whippet.

  2. All whippets to be no more than 32lb in weight for general handicap racing. Separate scratch classes will be held for the up to 36lb, up to 40lb and No Limit whippets.

  3. There will be a ¼ lb weight allowance given at all events.

  4. All BWRA time handicap racing will be handicapped at 0.06.

  5. Whippets will race as shown on programme and no interchanging of traps will be allowed unless by mutual agreement.

  6. Once seeded at start of the season, no dogs can change sides.

  7. Straight racing seeding to be separate from bends. Dogs can be seeded inside or outside to outside hare.

  8. All whippets to be put in the traps simultaneously.

  9. Only one person for each whippet will be allowed on the track, unless agreed beforehand with the Clerk of the Course.

  10. No dog or person, other than those in the heat will be allowed on the racetrack, unless authorised.

  11. No non-member may run a dog unless authorised.

  12. Any whippet(s) judged guilty of deliberate interference during a race will be disqualified and the race re-run at the officials discretion without the offending dog(s).

  13. Interference shall mean deliberate leaning on or deliberate attempts to worry. Accidental interference occasioned through crossing shall not be necessarily require disqualification or a re-run.

  14. Any dog disqualified for tackling at BWRA events to be reported to the National Secretary, 5 complaints and the pups card will be withdrawn; 3 complaints and the adult dogs card will be withdrawn.

  15. In the event of a whippet requiring a re-run, the re-run will take place after two races rest or equivalent period of time.

  16. All whippets to be muzzled when racing in Association events in such muzzles as approved by the Association.

  17. Any whippet finishing without a muzzle correctly fitted i.e. adequately covering the jaws, will be disqualified and placing awarded accordingly without a re-run unless judges fail to agree on placings. It is the owners ultimate responsibility to ensure the muzzle is correctly fitted.

  18. Any person found guilty of deliberately standing on the Lure string in order to stop or slow a race, shall have his/her whippet disqualified and be dealt with by the committee.

  19. All handlers with a whippet in a race shall stand 20 yards behind the finishing line and behind the ropes intended for the purpose. Failure to comply will result in disqualification. Handlers are responsible for catching their whippets(s) immediately after the race.

  20. Whippets will be vetted at the traps and any misdemeanour will result in immediate disqualification. If a whippet is in an injured state, then the Clerk of the Course will have the power to withdraw the whippet.

  21. Any bitch in season will not be allowed on the field of the race meeting. Any objections relating to offending bitches to be made to the Clerk of the Course on the day.

  22. Handlers of loose whippets on the track whilst a race is in progress shall pay £5.00.

  23. In all BWRA Events it is the handlers responsibility to ensure that their whippet(s) are ready in time for their race. The race will be called three times, failure to appear will mean that the race will be run without the missing whippet(s).

  24. Any dog not completing the course will be disqualified.

  25. Where there is a final, dogs must have run an equal number of times. Where a re-run is necessary this will count as the same race except where the dog is then involved in having to have an equal run, in which case it will be taken into account.

  26. Any member may appeal to the National Committee provided such an appeal is made in accordance with the currant grievance procedure.

  27. At all events, except National Championships, dogs not qualifying for the second round of racing will be automatically entered into consolation racing where consolation racing is provided, unless they specifically state otherwise at weigh-in. consolation racing will be provided wherever possible. (But not at Jack Cadman or National Championships).

  28. The Association has the right to require a test on any whippet at any of it’s events to determine the presence of substances deemed by the Association’s Testing Lab to affect its performance. In the event of such a test proving POSITIVE, the owner and whippet shall be dealt with by the National Committee. Refusal to comply with such a test will result in disqualification from the event and will then be dealt with by the National Committee. Any member may require the said test to be made on any whippet. In the event of the test proving NEGATIVE the member making the request will be liable for the full cost of the test.

  29. All BWRA events to be entry on the day.

  30. All national BWRA events, weigh in till 11am

  31. Puppy and No Limit scr. to be held at all events except championships.

  32. 28 day rule to apply to all BWRA championships.

  33. Yearling events to be held 12-18 months.

  34. Yearling events to be held at all bend events except championships, 12-18 months.

  35. Dogs to have one weigh only, and run as weighed.

  36. All dogs to be placed in traps before lure is at the start.

  37. Sup. Scr to be run at each event.

Officials Return to Top

  1. The Clerk of the Course will be named on the programme at all events.

  2. A starter judge, two middle judges and Clerk of the Course will be appointed for each track to stand at staggered positions on opposite sides of the track. These officials have the power to object. Such objectives to be made to the Clerk of the Course whose decision will be final.

  3. The Clerk of the Course shall instruct all officials as to their duties and positions and will acquaint all officials of the interpretation of the rules prior to the commencement of racing.

  4. Officials must not be approached on the whippet track by whippet handlers or spectators about any decisions made. Any complaint must be made to the Clerk of the Course immediately.

  5. Officials dogs should have weight checked by another person. And queries regarding the weight of any dog must be checked immediately.

  6. Two line judges shall be appointed. Judges are not allowed to confer. In the event of the Line judges failing to agree, a majority decision cannot be obtained, the whippets concerned shall re-run.

Championship Rules Return to Top

  1. In National Championship races, dogs shall race against dogs and bitches against bitches, except Scratch Champion classes where dogs and bitches run together.

  2. All whippets that win their weight class in the National Championships shall carry the prefix “Racing Champion” (RCh) and National Scratch Champion winner shall carry the prefix “Scratch Racing Champion” (SRCh).

  3. Weight groups to be run in their slots i.e. if only one heat to win a title it will be run with the heats, the first equalising run with the Xheats and the second equalising run with the finals.

  4. Racing for the National Championships to be over 150 yards straight.

  5. In yd per lb handicap at the National Finals, the front dog will run 150yds. Winners only go through in this handicap. Dogs do not need to re-weigh for the handicap, as their weight from the original weigh-in will be used.

  6. Classes in Adult Individual Championship events shall be up to 16lb and thereafter in 2lb additions up to 32lb.

  7. There will be Scratch Champion classes for dogs weighing between 33-36lb; 37-40lb and over 40lb.

  8. In the National Championships and National Scratch Championships the first and second whippets will go forward to the next round. In the Puppy Championships, winner only to go through in each round.

  9. A maximum of five whippets shall run in each race at National Championship events.

  10. All Puppy Championships will be run in four weight classes i.e. up to 20lb; 21-24lb; 25lb-28lb; 29-32lb; 150yds front dog. Run as weighed. Age 8-12 months on the day.

  11. At National Championship events all whippets must be present in the official paddock near the traps one race prior to their own race.

  12. At Championship events all whippets to be weighed in by advertised time.

  13. All dogs to run in the weight class for which they qualify by weight.

  14. The draw for weight classes for National Championships should be done by numbering the entrants and drawing the numbers for each heat. Seeding to be considered.

  15. Because of the possible seedings at Championship events the draw for crossheats is to be done on the day.

Additional Rules for Bend Racing Return to Top

  1. A maximum of five whippets per race where possible.

  2. The start and finish of the race must be on a straight part of the track not on a bend.

  3. Qualifiers re-drawn for traps. First and second in each round go through to next round for Championships.

  4. The distance for BWRA Bend racing events will be up to a maximum of 308 metres.

  5. All whippets to go into traps simultaneously and handlers to retire to the rear of the traps to the starter judges requirements.

  6. Handicapped events will be run at 1yd per lb.

  7. Bend Championships will be run to a Supreme for both Dog and Bitch.

Additional Rules for Team Racing Return to Top

  1. Regions/Clubs shall notify the National Secretary of their intention to compete not less than 7 days prior to the event.

  2. Racing will be in two weight classes i.e. up to 24lb; 25-32lb.

  3. Whippets may only race for the club or Region through which their owners are affiliated.

  4. Whippets will start from positions appropriate to their weight within the weight classes. All whippets of the same weight will run from the same mark.

  5. Fastest time trophies will be awarded to the winner of the fastest heat in each class, spare dog racing is excluded.

  6. Scoring. For a full race the whippet placed last shall be awarded one point an additional point shall be awarded for each subsequent higher place and a further bonus point for the race winner. Where a race does not have the full number of whippets the points should be awarded such that the winner of this race scores the same as for a full race i.e. where one or more teams do not have the full number of dogs. In the event of the Line judges failing to agree, the points shall be totalled and divided between the whippets concerned. The lowest individual score per team per class will not be included in the team score. If a team is a whippet short in a race, that will count as a lowest score.

  7. In the event of a whippet being disqualified  in a team race, then that whippet will be disqualified from taking any further part in the event. No substitute to be allowed.

  8. Scratch dogs (36lb; 40lb and No Limit) to be included in teams at Regional Team events. Heavyweight scratch dogs to be included in teams at Club Team Championships.

  9. At Straight Regional & Club Team Championships lightweights to race over 150yds and heavyweights over 175yds.

Grievance Procedure Return to Top

  1. Where a BWRA member at a BWRA meeting is dissatisfied with the result of a race a complaint may only be lodged with the Clerk of the Course.

  2. Any complaint must be lodged before the completion (i.e. the announcement of the result) of the following race, or after an equivalent period of time.

  3. Harassment in any way of officials and/or members will invalidate the complaint and will lead to disciplinary action.

  4. The Clerk of the Course shall fully investigate the complaint by questioning the track officials.

  5. The Clerk of the Course shall, after consultation with the Stewards, then give a decision which shall be binding on all parties (see rule 7).

  6. Where a member disagrees with the Clerk of the Courses’ decision he/she may complain in writing to the Regional secretary if the grievance arises from a Regional decision, or the National Secretary if the grievance arises from a decision at a National Race meeting.

  7. Where a complaint relates to the Clerk of the Courses’ decision at a race meeting, and is upheld, the result of the race shall not be altered. However the principle so established shall be published and may be incorporated in subsequent Rules Revision.

  8. The member making the complaint must be prepared to attend the next Regional/National Committee Meeting in person. Failure to do so may invalidate the complaint. The member may be accompanied by a representative of his/her choice, provided this person is a member of the BWRA.

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