On Thursday 12 November RWWA Stewards inquired into the reports received from the ChemCentre in Perth, that caffeine had been detected in the post-race blood samples taken from:
- TRADE TIP after competing in and winning Race 2 at the Junction Race Club on 22 August 2015.
- TINDAL after competing in and winning Race 5 at the Carnarvon Race Club on 12 September 2015.
These findings have been verified by the Racing Analytical Services Limited laboratory (RASL) in Victoria.
Evidence was taken from the Trainer of TRADE TIP and TINDAL, Ms Jo-Anne Leeson, RWWA Investigator Mr Geoff Johnson, RWWA Industry Veterinarian Dr Judith Medd and ChemCentre Analyst Mr James White.
At the inquiry Miss Leeson pleaded guilty to two charges issued under ARR178 with the particulars being;
That as the licensed trainer of TRADE TIP she did present it to race in Race 2 at the Junction Race Club meeting held on 22 August 2015 with the prohibited substance caffeine being detected in the post-race blood sample taken from that gelding.
That as the licensed trainer of TINDAL she did present it to race in Race 5 at the Carnarvon Race Club meeting held on 12 September 2015 with the prohibited substance caffeine being detected in the post-race blood sample taken from that gelding.
Stewards have today determined to impose a disqualification of seven (7) months for each offence. Stewards have also directed that two (2) months of the period of disqualification issued for the second charge is to be served concurrently with that of the first, which accordingly makes the total period of disqualification that is to be served twelve (12) months.
In determining penalty Stewards took into account;
- The pleas of guiltly entered to both charges and that this was Ms Leeson’s first offence after many years of licensed involvement
- Ms Leeson’s personal circumstances and the impacts of disqualification that apply
- That the level of caffeine detected in each sample was classified as relatively low
- That there was no explanation for the presence of the prohibited substance which is one that is classified as a stimulant and potentially performance enhancing
- Past cases involving caffeine, all of which resulted in disqualification
- The impact to the image and integrity of racing which requires that the penalty serve as a deterrent that sends a clear message that serious consequences arise in cases of this nature
Pursuant to AR177, Stewards also determined to disqualify TRADE TIP and TINDAL from winning Race 2 at Junction on 22 August 2015 and Race 6 at Carnarvon on 12 September 2015 respectively, with the placings to be amended accordingly and the relevant implications for stake money to apply.
General Manager Racing Integrity