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Results of Enquiries (J. Best, J.Tuite, J. Walton) heard by the Disciplinary Panel on 9 March

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Press Release

9 March 2017

In Absence - Jim Best

1. On 9 March 2017, the Disciplinary Panel of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) held an enquiry into the analysis of the urine ordered to be taken from MISSILE MAN (IRE), trained by Jim Best, by the Stewards at Towcester after the gelding was unplaced in the Totepool Betting On All UK Racing Maiden Hurdle Race on 17 December 2015. The sample tested positive for Triamcinolone acetonide (TCA) and its hydroxylated metabolite, both prohibited substances pursuant to Rule (G)16, in breach of Rule (G)2.1 of the Rules of Racing. The Panel also considered whether or not to take action under Rule (A)74.2 Ground 3 in respect of the possible disqualification of the gelding. 

2. Prior to the enquiry, both parties had agreed that they had no objection to the Panel members sitting and Mr Best had requested that the matter be heard in his absence. The BHA had no objection and its case was presented by Andrew Howell. 

3. The Panel noted that TCA is a synthetic corticosteroid with anti-inflammatory and analgesic action. There are a number of licensed preparations containing TCA available for use in humans, but there are not licensed veterinary preparations for TCA, The human preparation of TCA, sold under the brand name Adcortyl®, can be prescribed for use in animals under the prescribing cascade as set out by the Veterinary Medicines Directorate and there are no welfare concerns with its use.

4. The Panel also noted that Mr Best had not challenged the finding, and did not elect for analysis of the ‘B’ sample. 

5. Mr Howell informed the Panel that on 19 January 2016, two BHA Investigating Officers interviewed Mr Best at his yard. It was established during the course of the enquiries that the gelding had returned to his yard lame after its previous run at Plumpton on 30 November 2015. As such, Mr Best had arranged for his veterinary surgeon, Mike Barrott, to visit the yard. Mr Barrott had examined the gelding on 2 December 2015 and treated it for lameness. The treatment had included an intra-articular injection of Adcortyl® (6mg 0.6ml) into the gelding’s right hind fetlock.

6. The Panel noted Mr Best’s submissions in mitigation and noted that he had adhered to the stand-down Rule and the 14 clear days was confirmed by Mr Barrott.  The Panel also noted that Mr Best had stated that he had not intentionally or knowingly breached the Rules. However, Mr Howell explained that the BHA has a mandatory 14 day stand-down period from racing following the administration of the intra-articular corticosteroid, which on the facts of this case would have meant that the gelding was eligible to run on 17 December 2015. Despite the fact that Mr Best adhered to the Rule, the BHA guidance stated that the Withdrawal Time may be longer than the minimum stand-down period and that if he had any doubt he should have contacted the BHA for advice and/or had Elective Testing. 

7. Having considered the evidence, including the submissions from Mr Best, the Panel were satisfied that the source of the positive was the injection of Adcortyl® administered by Mr Barrott on 2 December 2015. The Panel found Mr Best in breach of Rule (G)2.1 and imposed a fine of £1,000. 

8. Under Rule (A)74.2 Ground 3 the Panel disqualified MISSILE MAN (IRE) from the race.

 

In Absence - Joseph Tuite

1. The Disciplinary Panel of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) held an enquiry on 9 March 2017 to consider whether or not Joseph Tuite, a licensed trainer, had committed a breach of Rule (C)17 of the Rules of Racing, in respect of his failure to notify the Racing Calendar Office, by noon 5 days before the horse’s next run, that WHO TOLD JO JO (IRE) had been gelded. The matter was drawn to the BHA’s attention when the horse ran at Kempton Park on 8 February 2017. 

2. Prior to the enquiry, Mr Tuite had agreed that the matter could be heard in his absence. Also, Mr Tuite and the BHA had agreed that they had no objection to the Panel members sitting. The BHA’s case was presented by Lauren Robinson.

3. Having considered the evidence, the Panel found Mr Tuite in breach of Rule (C)17 and fined him £200.  

 

 In Absence - James Walton

1. On 9 March 2017, the Disciplinary Panel of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) held an enquiry into the analysis of the urine ordered to be taken from CENTRAL FLAME, trained by James Walton, by the Stewards at Hexham after the gelding was placed fourth in the Arup Anniversary Classic Novices’ Steeple Chase on 30 April 2016. The sample tested positive for clenbuterol, a prohibited substance on raceday, pursuant to Schedule (G)1 paragraph 7 of the Rules of Racing. The Panel also considered whether or not to take action under Rule (A)74.2 Ground 3 in respect of the possible disqualification of the gelding. 

2. Prior to the enquiry, both parties had agreed that they had no objection to the Panel members sitting and Mr Walton had requested that the matter be heard in his absence. The BHA had no objection and its case was presented by Lauren Robinson.

3. The Panel noted that clenbuterol is a medication commonly used to widen the airways as part of the treatment of respiratory disease in horses in training. Clenbuterol is available in the UK, licensed for use in equines, and is contained in the products Ventipulmin granules, syrup or injectable solution and Dilaterol (25 micrograms/ml) Syrup for horses. Clenbuterol is prohibited at all times unless prescribed by a veterinarian at a therapeutic dose. This was because it can have a partitioning anabolic effect at higher, “off-label” doses. There was no suggestion that any drugs were misused in this case, and therefore the substance was considered as one prohibited on raceday only. 

4. The Panel also noted that Mr Walton had not challenged the finding, and did not elect for analysis of the ‘B’ sample.

5. Miss Robinson informed the Panel that on 13 June 2016, two BHA Investigating Officers interviewed Mr Walton at his yard. It was established during the course of the enquiries that the gelding had recently had a cough and snotty nose. John Macfarlane, his Veterinary Surgeon, had attended the yard and prescribed a five-day course of Dilaterol syrup to the gelding, commencing on 7 April 2016. After the medication had failed to cure the infection, a further five-day course of Dilaterol was started on 18 April 2016. Mr Walton had not taken any advice on the withdrawal period of Dilaterol, but had assumed it was seven clear days after the treatment had ended. The BHA published on its website guidance on Detection Times in relation to clenbuterol, which stated that the Detection Time for clenbuterol was 312 hours, which equated to 13 days.

6. Having considered the evidence, including a submission from Mr Walton, the Panel accepted his admission to a breach of Rule (G)2.1 and were satisfied that the source of the positive was the administration of Dilaterol to the gelding between 18 and 22 April 2016. The Panel found Mr Walton in breach of Rule (G)2.1 and imposed a fine of £1,000. 

7. Under Rule (A)74.2 Ground 3 the Panel disqualified CENTRAL FLAME from the race.

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