Results of appeals (Michael Appleby and Danny Cook) and enquiries (Micky Hammond and Royal Trooper) heard by the Disciplinary Panel on Thursday 12 February

12 Feb 2015

Michael Appleby

The Disciplinary Panel of the British Horseracing Authority on 12 February 2015 considered an appeal lodged by Michael Appleby, the trainer of DAME LUCY (IRE), placed third in the Handicap Stakes, against the decision of the Stewards at Wolverhampton on 6 February 2015 to find that DAME LUCY (IRE) had interfered with TAKE TWO, placed second, that the interference had improved DAME LUCY (IRE)’s placing and to reverse the placings.  The finding of careless riding against Andrew Mullen, the rider of DAME LUCY (IRE), for which he received a 2 day suspension, was not appealed.

The Panel heard evidence from Michael Appleby, Andrew Mullen and Jimmy Quinn, the rider of TAKE TWO.  It also viewed recordings of the race and the photo finish print.

The Panel found that 1½ furlongs out TAKE TWO suffered interference and Quinn had to stop riding for several strides.  After re-balancing the gelding TAKE TWO was still a neck down at the line.

In reaching its conclusion the Panel noted that following the interference and re-balancing the TAKE TWO, it was only in the final ½ furlong that TAKE TWO made its challenge.  By that time, DAME LUCY (IRE) was comfortably in second place.  The Panel accepted Mullen’s account that he was always going to stay for second place and could have, if he had pushed the mare, held second by a wider margin.

In view of these facts the Panel had significant doubt as to whether TAKE TWO would have been placed second but for the interference and therefore upheld Appleby’s appeal, placing DAME LUCY (IRE) second and TAKE TWO third.

Danny Cook

The Disciplinary Panel of the British Horseracing Authority on 12 February 2015 considered an appeal lodged by Danny Cook, the rider of ZAIDIYN (FR), placed fifth in the John Smith’s Scottish County Hurdle, against the decision of the Musselburgh Stewards on 1 February 2015 to find him in breach of Rule (B)59.4 of the Rules of Racing and to suspend him for 10 days, in that he failed to take all reasonable and permissible measures to ensure the gelding ran on its merits.

The Panel considered evidence from Cook, who was legally represented, and also viewed recordings of the race. The Panel were also shown videos of the gelding’s previous races from Bangor, Carlisle and Catterick.

The Panel found that Cook had settled ZAIDIYN (FR) early in the race.  He turned into the straight at the rear of the field and appeared to be travelling well.  Once in the straight Cook was not seen to make a timely, real and substantial effort despite finishing 5th beaten by 6¾ lengths. The Panel acknowledged from watching the gelding’s previous races that ZAIDIYN (FR) did not perform well when allowed to run too freely. That noted, the Panel considered the amount of effort which Cook demonstrated after the third last hurdle was insufficient to comply with the requirements of the Rules.

The Panel found Cook in breach of Rule (B)59.4 and dismissed the appeal.  It confirmed the 10 day suspension on Sunday 15 February to Tuesday 24 February 2015 inclusive.  Although the Panel upheld the decision of the Musselburgh Stewards it ordered that the deposit be returned in the circumstances of this case.

Micky Hammond

The Disciplinary Panel of the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) held an enquiry on 12 February 2015 into the analysis of the urine ordered to be taken from LUVLYLYNNTHOMAS, trained by Micky Hammond, by the Stewards at Pontefract after the filly had finished unplaced in the Bet Toteplacepot on All UK Meetings Maiden Auction Stakes on 20 October 2014.  The sample tested positive for a prohibited substance, in breach of Rule (C)53 of the Rules of Racing.  The Panel also considered whether or not to take action under Rule (A)74.2 of the Rules of Racing in respect of the possible disqualification of the filly.

The urine taken from LUVLYLYNNTHOMAS was found to contain meloxicam, which is a prohibited substance.  The trainer did not exercise his right to have the ‘B’ sample analysed.  After considering the evidence, including a statement from Hammond, the Panel was satisfied that, on the balance of probabilities, the source of the substance was metacam (a licensed preparation of meloxicam), which was administered on veterinary advice to the filly between 12 and 14 October 2014.  BHA detection time for meloxicam is 72 hours and it would not usually expect meloxicam to be detected in a horse’s system six days after administration.  However, the detection time is clearly stated to be taken as a guideline only and both the detection time and withdrawal period would be dependent upon each horse, specifically upon various factors, including, but not limited to, the size of the horse, its age and its environmental and medical history.  Mr Hammond’s veterinary surgeon, Mr Phillip Jones, had stated that one of the reasons for the positive sample may be that the filly metabolised the drug abnormally slowly.

The Panel found Hammond in breach of Rule (C)53 and imposed a fine of £750.  Under Rule (A)74.2 the Panel disqualified LUVLYLYNNTHOMAS from the race.

Royal Trooper

The Disciplinary Panel of the British Horseracing Authority held an enquiry on 12 February 2015 into a report that ROYAL TROOPER (IRE), trained by Mark Brisbourne, had refused to race in the Handicap Stakes at Wolverhampton on 9 January 2015.  The matter was referred to the Authority by the Wolverhampton Stewards following their enquiry of the same day, because the gelding had also refused to race in its last two races, both at Wolverhampton, on 19 and 22 December 2014.

Having considered the evidence, including a written statement from Brisbourne, and noting that the trainer was considering running the gelding back over hurdles, the Panel declared that with immediate effect no further entries would be accepted for races started by stalls until 12 June 2015.  They further instructed that if the gelding refused to start on its next start under either code it should be referred back to the Disciplinary Panel.

Notes to Editors:

1. In the notice of forthcoming appeals distributed on 11 February it was indicated that Andrew Mullen would also be appealing the finding of careless riding against him in the same race as the Michael Appleby appeal. However, subsequent to this a decision was made that he would not appeal.

2. The Panel for the Mullen/Appleby appeal was: Hopper Cavendish (Chair), Celina Carter and Matthew Lohn.

3. The Panel for the Danny Cook appeal was: William Barlow (Chair), Celina Carter and Matthew Lohn.

4.The Panel for the Micky Hammond and Royal Trooper enquiries was: William Barlow (Chair), Celina Carter and Roger Bellamy.