05/28/2009 11:00PM

Ontario starting whip review

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The Ontario Racing Commission has announced a pilot project for whip use in Thoroughbred racing.

The initiative requires all jockeys in the first two races of every card at Woodbine from Wednesday through June 28 to use a "Lite Touch" whip.

The whips, shorter than traditional ones, include three rows of feathers at least one inch in length and a rubber, natural-stitch, or open-leather looped "popper."

Also during the test period, jockeys will be allowed to use no more than two consecutive strikes once the whip is in use, allowing reasonable time for the horse to respond.

The program is meant to allow jockeys an opportunity to provide input on how a new whip rule will be developed.

Woodbine jockey Emma-Jayne Wilson already uses the new whip on a regular basis.