Greyhound Racing NSW (GRNSW) stewards have completed an inquiry into analysts’ reports that the urine sample taken from Black Laurel – after that greyhound had won Race 7 at the Goulburn Greyhound Club’s meeting on 3 September 2013 – had been analysed and confirmed to contain the prohibited substance pentobarbitone.
Evidence was taken from trainer Edmund O’Brien and from Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory (ARFL) Science Manager Dr Adam Cawley. Written evidence was submitted from ARFL Senior Veterinarian Dr Craig Suann, the ARFL, Racing Analytical Services, VIC, and from GRNSW.
Mr O’Brien could offer no definitive reason for the laboratory findings, however, evidence from studies conducted previously indicate a possibility of the substance being contained in stock used for pet mince that is fed to greyhounds, having regard to the particular level reported in this urine sample.
Mr O’Brien pleaded guilty to a charge under GAR 83 (2) (a) in that he presented Black Laurel for the race in question other than free of any prohibited substance in that the urine sample taken from the greyhound after the race was found on confirmatory analysis to have contained pentobarbitone.
Following submissions on penalty, Mr O’Brien was fined $500.
In assessing penalty, consideration was given to Mr O’Brien’s record of having only one previous prohibited substance breach in 1998 in more than 16 years of registration, his plea entered, his personal circumstances, the particular substance involved and penalties previously imposed in respect of such findings and the absence of any significant kennel support for Black Laurel.
Black Laurel was disqualified from the event and the placings amended accordingly.