Day At The Track

Gout medication gets Marc Campbell suspended

08:35 AM 13 Jul 2018 NZST
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Marc Campbell, harness racing
Marc Campbell will be missing the Governor's Plate

The follow story appeared today at www.theguardian.pe.ca 

SUMMERSIDE, PE – There is one familiar face missing from the track at Governor’s Plate Week harness racing in Summerside, and it all appears to be caused by a case of gout.

Marc Campbell, a regular driver in both Summerside and Charlottetown, is serving a suspension from July 8 to 22, after a horse he trains and drives –  Freddie – had a Class 4 positive test at Red Shores Racetrack and Casino at the Charlottetown Driving Park on June 14.

Standardbred Canada’s website notes that Freddie has been suspended for 15 days, and must requalify within three seconds of the June 14th race.

Trainers are held responsible when horses test positive, and Campbell was previously suspended for a Class 4 positive test in August 2013.

Paul Hogan, director of racing for the Atlantic Provinces Harness Racing Commission, noted there are five classes of violations, and Freddie’s test was the second-least serious.

“Class 1 is the most severe, Class 2 lesser, Class 3, Class 4 and Class 5,” explained Hogan. “This is on the lower end of the scale in terms of the classifications.”

Hogan explained the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency (CPMA) looks after post-race testing that is done at a lab in British Columbia.

“They have a company called Racing Forensics Incorporated, and they are contracted by CPMA to collect the samples,” continued Hogan, who added, “Sometimes it’s a quick turnaround, and sometimes it could be getting close to three weeks before the test results are finally received.”

The results of Freddie’s positive test were received the first week of July.

Marc Campbell’s side

Campbell, who represented P.E.I. in the Atlantic regional driving championship in Truro, N.S., on June 29, offered his side of the story.

“(Freddie) races from our farm in Winsloe,” explained Campbell. “That particular night, we had no stalls available in our main barn, so I arranged for a stall next door.

“It was empty for quite a time, we went in and the stall looked clean to us, there might have been a mouthful of hay there or whatever. It turns out the gentleman next door who does the stalls over there was on a medication for gout. The medication is called Probenecid.

“Anyway, I got a call last week on Wednesday night (July 4) telling me I had a positive test for Probenecid.

“I had no idea what Probenecid was, and I had to look it up. After a day or two of trying to think and figure out what happened, because obviously I didn’t give my horse medication for gout, we figured out that the gentleman next door was on this particular drug."

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