New South Wales Greyhound Trainer Suspended For Two Months For Feeding Green Tea

Greyhound Racing NSW Stewards last week inquired into analysts reports that the post-race urine sample taken from Cut The Cards after that greyhound won Race 9, the Sportingbet Maiden Heat 520m, at the Dapto meeting on Thursday 5 January 2012, had been analysed and confirmed to contain the prohibited substance Caffeine, Theopylline, Paraxanthine and Theobromine.

At the same time, Stewards also inquired into analysts reports that the post-race urine sample taken from Any Joy after that greyhound won Race 9, the China Doll Woolloomooloo Maiden Heat 535, at the Richmond meeting on Saturday 14 January 2012, had also been analysed and confirmed to contain the prohibited substance Caffeine and its metabolites.

Evidence was taken from trainer John Smart and Dr Adam Cawley, Science Manager of the Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory. Written evidence was entered from the Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory, the Racing Science Centre (QLD) and Racing Analytical Services Ltd (VIC). Written evidence was also presented to the Inquiry in the form of a reference from licensed thoroughbred trainer Peter Snowden.

The evidence established that Mr Smart was in a regular habit of introducing green tea as part of the food preparation for his greyhounds, with each resultant analysis indicating a low level of Caffeine and its metabolites present in post-race urine samples taken from Cut The Cards and Any Joy.

Mr Smart subsequently pleaded guilty to two separate charges under Greyhound Racing Rule 83 (2) (a) in that he presented both Cut The Cards and Any Joy for the races in question other than free of a prohibited substance in that the urine samples taken from both greyhounds were found to contain the prohibited substances Caffeine, Theophylline, Paraxthine and Theobromine.

After considering submissions on penalty, Mr Smart received a suspension of two months for each offence, with both periods of suspension to be served concurrently.

In determining penalty Stewards took into consideration the guilty plea entered by Mr Smart in response to both charges and his co-operation with the inquiry, his previously unblemished record in relation to this Rule in seven years of licensing within the industry, his extensive involvement overall in the racing industry over many years in particular thoroughbred racing, his personal circumstances and the hobbyist nature of his training, the nature of the substance which included a degree of negligence on the part of Mr Smart, previous penalties given to other persons in relation to the same Rule, and the effects that such findings have on the image of greyhound racing.