Greyhound Racing NSW (GRNSW) Stewards on Wednesday 11 September 2013 conducted an inquiry into analysts reports that the urine sample taken from Phantom Jewels after that greyhound won Race 6, the Centrebet Stake, 520m, run at the Lismore GBOTA meeting on Tuesday 19 February 2013, had been analysed and confirmed to contain the prohibited substance 5beta-androstane-3alpha,17beta-diol, a metabolite of testosterone, at a concentration of greater than 10 ng/ml in a bitch.
The inquiry was conducted via video conference between the Lismore track and GRNSW Central Control Room at Rhodes.
Evidence was taken from trainer John Free, and Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory (ARFL) Science Manager Dr Adam Cawley with written evidence tendered from the ARFL and the Queensland Racing Science Centre.
Mr Free made admissions consistent with the laboratory reports in that he had been administering a preparation known as Tepro testosterone propionate, which contains twice the level of active ingredient to that contained in the preparation Testoprop, recommended by the GRNSW Welfare and Veterinary Services Unit in respect of oestrus control. The use of Tepro had been under the direction of his personal veterinary surgeon.
Mr Free pleaded guilty to a charge under GAR 83 (2) (a) in that he presented Phantom Jewels for the race in question other than free of prohibited substances in that the urine sample taken from the greyhound after the race was found on confirmatory analysis to contain the prohibited substance 5beta-androstane-3alpha,17beta-diol, a metabolite of testosterone, at a concentration of greater than 10 ng/ml in a bitch.
Mr Free was subsequently fined $2000. In determining penalty Stewards took into account Mr Free’s guilty plea, his particularly difficult personal circumstances at the present time, his industry involvement over an extended period and the issue of parity with penalties applied in other jurisdictions with this substance. Stewards were mindful that this was one of the first reports of the presence at excessive levels of this substance in a greyhound sample in NSW after the introduction of the rule on 1 January 2013. A measure of general deterrence was also considered, particularly in regard to use of a product known to have extended excretion times.
Phantom Jewels was disqualified from the race in question and the placings amended accordingly.