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Mr. Shane Ryder (Trainer) Referral – Galway 28th October 2019

The Referrals Committee, Mr. Justice Tony Hunt (in the chair), Mr. Anthony Byrne and Mr. Finbar Cahill convened at the Offices of the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (IHRB), The Curragh, Co Kildare on 5th March 2020 to consider whether or not Mr. Shane Ryder (Trainer) was in breach of any rules as a result of a report received from LGC Laboratories, Fordham, UK.

The report stated that the Sample taken from A Few Bob Short following his win in Reaneys of Galway supporting NUIG Handicap at Galway on 28th October was found to contain oxazepam and temazepam. Under Rule 20 (v) and Regulation R14 of the Rules of Racing and Irish National Hunt Steeplechase Rules oxazepam and temazepam are prohibited substances.

The trainer declined to have the B Sample analysed. He was in attendance at the hearing with his Veterinary Surgeon Mr. Paul Houlihan.   

Evidence was heard from Dr Lynn Hillyer, IHRB Chief Veterinary Officer and Head of Anti-Doping based on the Investigation Report previously circulated. 

In her evidence, Dr Hillyer outlined the findings of the IHRB investigation. She stated that horse was recorded as having been treated with diazepam for muscle soreness. Diazepam metabolises to oxazepam and temazepam.  All three are members of the benzodiazepine class of drugs – they are not licensed for use in the horse but can be used legitimately under the prescription of a veterinary surgeon according to the “cascade”.  These types of drugs have a sedative/tranquilizer/muscle relaxant/anti-anxiety properties. 

Mr. Ryder confirmed he accepted the result of the analysis of the A portion of the sample and that he agreed with the content of Dr. Hillyer’s investigation report. He noted that he had exceeded the withdrawal time recommended by his Veterinary Surgeon but accepted that it was not long enough.

Having considered the evidence, the Committee were satisfied that Mr. Ryder was in breach of Rule 96(a) and disqualified A Few Bob Short and ordered that the stake be forfeited and amended the result of the race to read as follows:-


First:              Ozone (Ire)     

Second:         Still Alive (GB)

Third:             Morph (Ire)

Fourth:           Castlegrove (Ire)

Fifth:              Bodak (Ire)

In considering penalty the Committee noted that the Trainer had provided full cooperation to the investigation and the Committee imposed a fine of €1,000 however waived it under the provisions of Rule 96(a) as they were satisfied that the Trainer had taken all reasonable precautions to avoid a breach of the rule. 

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

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