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Scott Manson v KartSport New Zealand


Appeal against decision of NSO – Junior kart driver (S) finished first in final race at event but was disqualified for having an unmarked carburettor, contrary to the relevant rules, at inspection after final – event part of a series and winner of series represents New Zealand overseas – disqualification ultimately meant he was second overall on points but if his disqualification did not stand he would win series on points and represent New Zealand – S disqualified as result of stewards’ hearing – following this a technical inspection carried out and S’s engine found to be compliant – chief steward subsequently cancelled disqualification – KartSport Inquiry Board subsequently held stewards’ committee decision stood and confirmed disqualification – S appealed to KartSport Appeal Board who dismissed his appeal – natural justice complaints about stewards’ committee hearing such as hearing proceeded without S present and chief steward who filed complaint sat on panel – However, these complaints concerning the procedure of the stewards’ hearing could not succeed as KartSport Appeal Board heard S’s appeal “de novo” (i.e. heard the case anew as if it had not been heard before) and the appeal to the Sports Tribunal was from the KartSport Appeal Board decision and not from the Stewards’ decision – carburettors apparently marked with paint earlier in event by KartSport technical officer – whether driver has responsibility to ensure carburettor has been marked by official – Tribunal concluded that while it was for KartSport’s technical officer to mark the carburettor, it was also the driver’s responsibility to ensure that the markings were there (or in the case of a junior such as S, the parent or guardian) – drivers and parents had been told so at the mandatory drivers’ briefing (S and father signed registration form declaring they would abide by directions of chief steward on day and one of these directions, given at drivers’ briefing, was that competitors were to check markings on carburettor) – Tribunal acknowledged that in dismissing this appeal, S will be denied opportunity to represent NZ when his only omission may have been to check his carburettor was marked – however in unfortunate circumstances of this case, as the carburettor was not marked for whatever reason, the mandatory penalty of disqualification under KartSport’s rules must follow and the appeal was dismissed – Tribunal made observations about amending various rules and procedures that it hoped might assist KartSport.

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