Day At The Track

Edward Collins inquiry conducted

08:20 PM 13 Jun 2017 NZST
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Harness Racing New South Wales (HRNSW) Stewards conducted an Inquiry today into a report received from the Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory (ARFL) that synephrine had been detected in the urine sample taken from VOLATICUS following its win in race 6, the GOLD CROWN COCKTAIL PARTY 24TH MARCH PACE (1730 metres) conducted at Bathurst on Friday 10 March 2017.

The ‘B’ sample was confirmed by Racing Analytical Services Limited (RASL) in Victoria.

Mr Collins appeared at the inquiry. Evidence including the Reports of Analysis was presented to the Inquiry. Mr Collins presented evidence in relation to his registered training establishment and a report from an Upper Macquarie Country Council Weeds Officer that confirmed the presence of the plant species, Juncus usitatus, at his training establishment. These plants are commonly known as Common Rush, Pin Rush or Mat Rush and produce the substance synephrine. It was noted that a previous warning issued in 2012 is published on HRNSW’s website.

HRNSW Stewards also presented a report from The Royal Botanical Gardens, National Herbarium of NSW confirming that plant samples obtained by HRNSW Stewards during a stable inspection at Mr Collins’ training establishment on 10 April 2016 included the species Juncus australis and Juncus laeviusculus.  

Mr Collins pleaded guilty to a charge issued pursuant to Rule 190 (1), (2) & (4) for presenting VOLATICUS to race not free of a prohibited substance, being synephrine.

In respect of that charge, Stewards did not impose a penalty on Mr Collins as they were satisfied that the detection of synephrine had resulted from inadvertent environmental contamination.  However, Mr Collins was cautioned that he must take all reasonable measures in future to manage his training establishment and horses to ensure that his horses were presented in accord with the Rules.

In considering penalty Stewards were mindful of the following;

•    Mr Collins’ licence history over a long period, and other personal subjective facts;

•    Mr Collins’ had no prior offences of this nature;

•    That Mr Collin’s had been proactive in investigating the circumstances; and

•    The analytical results in this instance had occurred through inadvertent environmental contamination.

Acting under the provisions of Rule 195, VOLATICUS was disqualified from the abovementioned race.

Harness Racing NSW (HRNSW) is the controlling body for harness racing in New South Wales with responsibilityfor commercial and regulatory management of the industry including 33 racing clubs across the State. HRNSW is headed by a Board of Directors and is independent of Government. 

Harness Racing New South Wales

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