Greyhound Racing NSW (GRNSW) stewards have finalised an inquiry into analysts’ reports that the urine sample taken from Shaylee after that greyhound won Race 1 at The Gardens meeting on 4 May 2013, had been analysed and confirmed to contain the testosterone metabolite 5 – beta androstane-3 alpha-17beta Diol at a level in excess of 10 ng/ml in urine as specified in GAR 83 (6) as an exempted level in urine taken from a bitch.
Evidence was taken from trainer Louise McGee, veterinary surgeon Dr Fergus Hay and Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory (ARFL) Science Manager Dr Adam Cawley. Written evidence was submitted from Ms McGee, ARFL Senior Veterinarian Dr Craig Suann, the ARFL, GRNSW and Racing Science Centre QLD.
The inquiry heard that Ms McGee, who keeps veterinary records for all greyhounds in her care and did so at all relevant times, had arranged for Dr Hay to administer 0.25 ml of testoprop as an oestrus suppressant approximately four-and-a-half days prior to Shaylee competing in The Gardens race. This was slightly inside the recommended guidelines of at least five days administration prior to racing and the six days recommended by GRNSW in November 2012.
Ms McGee subsequently pleaded guilty to a charge under GAR 83 (2) (a) in that she presented Shaylee for the race in question other than free of any prohibited substance in that the urine sample taken from the bitch after the race was found on confirmatory analysis to have contained 5beta-androstane, 3alpha-17 beta Diol in excess of the threshold level of 10 ng/ml.
Although Ms McGee’s reports were received well into the year and outside of the period of leniency extended by GRNSW and other greyhound jurisdictions in respect of matters involving this Category 3 prohibited substance, she was fined $1,750.
In assessing penalty, consideration was given to Ms McGee’s previously unblemished record of nearly 20 years of registration, a high number of cleared samples taken during this period, her guilty plea, the relatively low level of the substance reported which was consistent with the records kept by Ms McGee, personal references supplied and the absence of any significant kennel support for Shaylee.
Also considered were her personal circumstances in caring for her partner and many retired greyhounds, as well as racing and breeding stock.
Notwithstanding these factors a measure of negligence had been shown in the administration of testoprop slightly inside the recommended time and that a measure of general deterrence should be implied in these circumstances.
Shaylee was disqualified from the event and the final of the series run on 10 May 2013 under GAR 83 (5) and the placings amended accordingly.