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Jason Conneely (Apprentice Jockey) – Banned Substance Leopardstown – 3 July 2014

The Referrals Committee, Judge Tony Hunt (in the Chair), Sean Barry and Mrs. T.K. Cooper met at the Turf Club, the Curragh, Co. Kildare on Thursday, 21st August 2014 to consider a report from IMIM Hospitaldelmar in Barcelona, Spain which stated that a sample of urine taken from Jason Conneely, Apprentice Jockey, during in-competition testing on 3rd July 2014 at Leopardstown Racecourse, Co. Dublin, was found to contain Benzoylecgonine and Ecgonine Methyl Ester (Cocaine metabolites). These are banned substances under the Rules of Racing and are prohibited in-competition pursuant to the World Anti-Doping Agency Prohibited List International Standard, as adopted by the Turf Club.  The “A” sample findings were accepted by Jason Conneely and as such the “B” sample was not tested.

Evidence was heard from Jason Conneely.

In his evidence Mr. Conneely confirmed his acceptance of the results of the “A” sample.  He said he had no idea why he was positive for cocaine metabolites as he never knowingly took cocaine.  He said he socialised in Kildare after the Derby and felt very ill on the following day.  He did not know why this occurred.  He said that he felt fine after that.  Mr Conneely referred to a number of previous drug tests which were carried out on him, all of which were negative.  He said he does not take drugs.

Having considered the evidence, the Referrals Committee found Jason Conneely to be in breach of Rule 277 and suspended him for a period of six months (4th September 2014 to 3rd March 2015).  In arriving at their decision, the Committee stated that in normal circumstances a penalty of 12 months would be imposed for a similar breach but in view of the way in which Mr Conneely met the case, they felt a six month penalty was more appropriate in the circumstances.

The case was presented by Conal Boyce, Solicitor, Naas, Co. Kildare.

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