Melinda Finn disqualified for 12 years for EPO positive swab

LEADING New South Wales trainer Melinda Finn is the first person in the greyhound industry to be found guilty of doping greyhounds with EPO.

Finn was slapped with a 12-year disqualification on Tuesday after being found guilty of the four breaches she was charged with under the prohibited substances rule, GAR 83(2).

The charges were as follows:

  • Melinda Finn presented the greyhound Still Searchin to race at Wentworth Park on March 20, 2015, when it was not free of a prohibited substance.
  • That Melinda Finn presented the greyhound Down Every Road to race at Wentworth Park on March 27, 2015, when it was not free of a prohibited substance.
  • That Melinda Finn presented the greyhound Down Every Road to race at Wentworth Park on April 4, 2015, when it was not free of a prohibited substance.
  • That Melinda Finn presented the greyhound Winsome Warrior to race at Wentworth Park on May 4, 2015, when it was not free of a prohibited substance.

The substances referred to in the charges was Recombinant Human Erythropoietin (EPO), which is a category two prohibited substance.

Finn entered a guilty plea to all charges. After considering the evidence, stewards imposed a 117 week-disqualification for each charge, whilst she was also issued an additional 156-weeks disqualification for cumulative aggravating factors on all charges.

All up, Finn will spend 12 years on the sidelines, with the penalty backdated to her original suspension which commenced on May 29, 2015.

Finn’s disqualification period started on Tuesday and will expire on December 20, 2027.

Finn’s case was the first time a greyhound has returned a positive sample to EPO which is a drug used to stimulate the bone marrow in order to produce extra red blood cells and haemoglobin.

This results in the blood having greater oxygen carrying capacity – meaning more oxygen gets to the muscles during exercise.

It can have a negative effect on the dog, with too high of a dose resulting in the blood becoming too thick and unable to pump around the body – something which could potentially cause the dog to have a heart attack.

Australian Racing Greyhound contacted Finn, who did not wish to make any comment at the present time, with the decision in the hands of her solicitors.

It is unknown yet whether Finn will appeal the disqualification, however we will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.

Past Discussion

  1. Just another “bad apple”, I reckon! 

    Oh, wait!

    She was/is “one of the most respected conditioners in NSW”, to quote Katherine Ernst:

    And the stewards who passed sentence on her regarded as a “mitigating factor” the fact that she worked on the Richmond Greyhound Racing Club’s Committee. 

    Seems the “bad apples” extend throughout the whole barrel!

  2. Yeah that’s a loop hole that needs to be tighten, by buying the propriety next door is what these cheats get  up to trying to beat the system, The question i ask, is how long   has these drug cheats been at it   and collecting prize money by cheating with the use of drugs?

  3. Just generally remember the horses with the elephant juice and the attempts to test athletes re the 2000 Olympic Games. The olympic committees approached the Feds for funding for advanced drug detection ant the PM refused it saying that the country could not afford it. I attended a horse training establishment where a well performed horse hoof fell off. I was told (hearsay) that the horse was on elephant juice that masked a bad infection. It was reported that a trainer scratched himself with the needle on the syringe  with Elephant juice and it killed him. They were talks about thousand of tests for EPO at the time. It was thought to have long term health problems for the animal. The ICAC 2000 discovered EPO factories in trainer raids at the time. 

  4. John Tracey  well,BAIRD cannot shut down the industry based on drug detections….without taking down horse industry as well. would look like a proper narna if he tried that trick. its out there for sure,and it just needs the right moment to catch and break it all will come,but hopefully before they do a runner from the industry.

  5. A long time I’d say. All the while they are pinging the little guy for cobalt and arsenic from over supplementation and therapeutic drugs trying to keep their dogs fit and well to pretend they are cleaning up the game. FAIL.

  6. spyman John Tracey I don’t think any government of the Future will pull that stunt ever again ,We can  only hope there is a mass clean out of the  LEECHS  that have been sucking the life blood out of the industry for years , other wise the whole exercise  has been a waste of time and money  for all concern ! we live in hope ? all that aside i wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

  7. Repeated offences of this magnitude deserve a lifetime ban.Surely this is what the industry wants to rid itself of. Are greyhound stewards allowed to warn off individuals permanently,  as can happen in the thoroughbred industry.

  8. Trevor H Yes, there is a reciprocal agreement between all racing codes. LifetIme bans are  at the Queen’s pleasure and also can be reviewed from time to time but generally speaking a life time ban will hold.

  9. Taboulikid Yeah like many others and myself  we are STILL waiting to collect what we are owed  form a TAP DANCE and that is a fact ! Baby ?

  10. BobWhitelaw Taboulikid  lol….WTF is this?

    BOB you have a ripper xmas and a better new year my friend.thanks for all your help and expertise(can I say BABY?)….LOL

  11. spyman BobWhitelaw Taboulikid Gale i deal in facts, not drugs  and i have a good memory  especially when i’am duded  by cheats .So after unloading my anger ,i would like to wish you also, a Merry Christmas  and Prosperity for 2017  cheers

  12. It’s all in black and white baby. Bye bye cheat. For how many years has the rest of the industry been making up the fields running their dogs clean to keep these scumbags in the winners circle.

    Not an ounce of sympathy