Quite the opposite to what most pundits were predicting, Jason Thompson has failed to appeal against the miniscule $1,000 fine handed to him by GRV Stewards after El Galo’s positive swab to Buscopan.
No doubt Thompson was wary that the penalty, which many in the industry have seen as incredibly “light”; could be increased to a period of disqualification and/or a heftier fine on appeal. El Galo’s disqualification from the 2008 Group 1 Topgun will stand.
Weighing heavily too in to the matter, is the news of Darren McDonald also swabbbing positive to Buscopan with one of his greyhounds; which could see the GRV do more investigative work in to the drug and how and why it is being used in greyhounds.
Rumours are rife that the drug might be used as a masking agent, or as a pre-race performance enhancer either by itself or mixed with another drug.
Jason Thompson was adamant the drug was only used post-race to relieve “tying up”, and the fact that he only received a $1,000 fine and no period of disqualification tends to suggest that GRV Stewards took his explanation and the evidence of his vet, Dr Barry Hayward to be consistent with that reasoning.
However the fact a second positive swab has now emerged, surely means GRV Stewards might now be obliged to further investigate “other” potential uses of the drug; so they are better placed to properly adjudicate on positive swabs to Buscopan with the full knowledge of how it might potentially be used and why.
And, if GRV Stewards are to again take it as read that the positive swab is just an accidental positive due to clearance times, then the question needs to be asked:
Why do two of our leading trainers have problems with their greyhounds “tying up”?
It is an easily relieved syndrome and can be treated with many simple methods that would not produce positive swabs, why are they using, or being advised to use Buscopan?