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Charles O’Brien (Trainer) Referral - Dundalk, 7th November 2018

The Referrals Committee, Mr. Sean Barry (in the chair), Mr. Laurence McFerran and Mr. Philip Caffrey met at the Offices of the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (IHRB) The Curragh, Co. Kildare on Thursday 13th December 2018, to consider the referral of Charles O’Brien, Trainer by the Stewards at Dundalk on 7th November 2018.

On the day following the running of the Handicap (Division 1), the Stewards wished to interview Mr. O’Brien concerning the pattern of behavior of Fake Media for failing to load into the stalls for the third successive time. Mr. O’Brien was not present at the racecourse and the Authorised Representative had left the racecourse prior to the expiration of 10 minutes following the Winner All Right. In the circumstances, the Stewards were unable to hear any evidence and therefore referred the matter to the Referrals Committee.

The Referrals Committee considered the matter with respect to Rules 14, 148 (i) and (v)(f), 229(v) and Regulation 13.

The trainer, Mr. O’Brien, was in attendance and in his evidence, he stated that the horse had been recertified three times previously and had run three times after his first run at Dundalk in March without issue. However, she reacted on the day and could not be loaded into the stalls. He advised that he had an Authorised Representative present, but his representative had left the track after the horse did not start in the race. He said that his representative had not realised the requirement to wait for 10 minutes after the ‘Winner All Right’ announcement. He advised that the horse has since been returned out of training and is due to go to the sales.

Having considered the evidence, the Committee noted that Fake Media had been recertified previously and had been returned out of training. They found Mr. O’Brien in breach of Rule 229(v) as his Authorised Representative had failed to wait for 10 minutes after the ‘Winner All Right’ which would have allowed the Stewards on the day to hold their enquiry. Mr. O’Brien was issued a caution as to his responsibilities in relation to Rule 229(v).

The case was presented by Ms. Cliodhna Guy, Head of Legal & Compliance & Licensing.

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