Protecting the Integrity & Reputation of Irish Horseracing

Integrity Portal

Mrs. John Harrington (Trainer)/Rea Restaurant Limited (Owner) Appeal Wexford 15th June 2016


The Appeals Body (Division Two) Justice Tony Hunt (in the chair), Con O’Mahony and Peter N. Reynolds met at the Turf Club, The Curragh, Co. Kildare on Monday 4th July 2016 to consider the appeal of Mrs. John Harrington and Rea Restaurant Limited, trainer and owner respectively of Flaviana. The appeal was against the decision of the Stewards at Wexford on 15th June 2016 to demote Flaviana from first place to second place following the running of the Handicap Hurdle. The Stewards had held an enquiry into possible interference from the last hurdle involving Flaviana, ridden by R.M. Power placed first and Coolfighter (GER), ridden by D.E. Splaine and trained by Noel Dooly, placed second, where it appeared that Coolfighter (GER) received interference. As the Stewards were satisfied that Flaviana had improved her finishing placing in relation to Coolfighter (GER), they reversed the placings.

The grounds of appeal lodged were that while Flaviana did drift towards Coolfighter (GER) at the final hurdle, contact between the two horses was minimal, that D.E. Splaine did not have to stop riding and when corrected and returned to a straight course that Flaviana was finishing her race strongly and always holding Coolfighter (GER).

Evidence was heard from R.M. Power and D.E. Splaine. Film of the race was also reviewed, as was a film of a race at Gowran Park on 18th June 2016 which Coolfighter (GER) won.

In his evidence, R.M. Power outlined how the race went. He said that Flaviana settled well and quickened up between the last two hurdles when a gap appeared. She jumped the last well and edged slightly to the right after that obstacle which caused minimal interference to Coolfighter (GER). He felt he was always holding Coolfighter (GER) and that Flaviana finished the race strongly. He concluded by saying that Flaviana doesn’t do much when she gets to the front.

In response to questions from Andrew Coonan, R.M. Power accepted that there was contact between Flaviana and Coolfighter (GER) after the final flight and that his mount did drift to the right. He also accepted that the interference lasted for about four or five strides after the last.

In his evidence, D.E. Splaine said that Coolfighter (GER) received two slight bumps after jumping the last and was carried right. He said there is a very short run in at Wexford and his mount did not have enough time to make up the lost ground. He said he was convinced his horse would have won if he had run in a straight line.

Having considered the evidence, the Appeals Body dismissed the Appeal as they were of the opinion that the interference caused by Flaviana to Coolfighter (GER) cost that horse the race.

They confirmed the result to read as follows:

First: Coolfighter (GER)
Second: Flaviana
Third: Fighting Days
Fourth: Grand Partner
Fifth: To Choose
Sixth: King’s Wharf

The case was presented by Paul Murtagh, Stewards Secretary, Mrs. John Harrington and Rea Restaurant Limited were represented by Kevin Power, Maurice Power Solicitors, Killmallock, Co. Limerick. Noel Dooly and D.E. Splaine were represented by Andrew Coonan, Coonan Cawley Solicitors, Naas, Co. Kildare..

Copyright © 2018, I.H.R.B, All Rights Reserved.