Protecting the Integrity & Reputation of Irish Horseracing

Integrity Portal

Mr. Paul Lake (Rider) – Application to review suspension

The Referrals Committee, Mr. Justice Tony Hunt (in the chair), Mr. Nicholas Wachman and Mr. Laurence McFerran convened via Zoom on Wednesday, 23rd November 2022 to consider an application from Mr. Paul Lake (Rider) to review the suspension imposed on him at a Referral Hearing on 11th April 2022.


At that hearing, the Referrals Committee found Mr. Lake in breach of Rule 277(i) in that samples of urine taken from him during in competition testing at Fairyhouse on 9th November 2022 was found to contain Benzoylecgonine (metabolite of cocaine). They imposed a penalty of four years suspension of his licence but the committee stated they would consider an application to suspend the penalty from 9th November 2022 should Mr. Lake comply with strict terms and conditions.


At the Referral Hearing to consider his application, evidence was heard from Mr. Lake and Mr. J.R. Finn (Trainer). Correspondence from Dr. Jennifer Pugh (IHRB Senior Medical Officer) and Mr. Pat Brennan (Counsellor) was also considered.


In his evidence, Mr. Lake stated that this had been an experience he wished to put behind him and that he had worked exceptionally hard to get ready to return to racing and has engaged fully with Dr. Pugh and Mr. Brennan.


Having considered the evidence, the panel decided to permit Mr. Lake to apply for a new licence and advised the Licensing Committee that the panel had no objection to the granting of a new licence with immediate effect. If granted by the Licensing Committee that new licence will be subject to a suspended penalty of three years for a period of three years up to the 9th November 2025. The suspension of the balance is on the condition that Mr. Lake undergoes supervision by Dr. Pugh and comply to any terms and conditions that she may apply.


The case was presented by Mr. Michael Daly, IHRB Regulatory Legal Advisor.


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