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Victorian RAD Board cobalt Leek and Andrews hearings on Tuesday

The Victorian Racing Appeals and Disciplinary Board will hear a preliminary issue in the matters of Matthew Leek and Trevor Andrews on Tuesday 25 September 2018. 
 
Mr Leek and Mr Andrews have been charged with cobalt offences (as summarised below).  This preliminary hearing is to determine whether the Board will order that urine samples be referred to Mr Ross Wenzel to test proportions of organic and inorganic cobalt.  Mr Leek and Mr Andrews have applied for such a referral, which is opposed by the Stewards. 

Matthew Leek

Racing Victoria (RV) Stewards issued four charges, of which two are in the alternative, against licensed trainer Matthew Leek following an investigation into the circumstances that led to his horse, Champagne Kisses, returning a sample containing cobalt in excess of the permitted threshold of 200 micrograms per litre in urine.

A pre-race urine sample was taken from Champagne Kisses prior to the mare running unplaced in the Evergreen Turf F&M Maiden Plate (1400 metres) at Racing.com Park (Pakenham) on 3 March 2016.

The concentration of cobalt detected in the urine sample was determined by Racing Analytical Services Limited (RASL) to be 531 micrograms per litre (with a 25 microgram per litre measurement of uncertainty) and by Racing Chemistry Laboratory to be 600 micrograms per litre (with a 20 microgram per litre measurement of uncertainty).

The following four charges, of which two are in the alternative, have been laid against Mr Leek under the Australian Rules of Racing:

Charge One (AR 175(h)(i)) – Administration of a prohibited substance for the purpose of affecting the performance or behaviour of a horse in a race
AR 175(h)(i) provides the Principal Racing Authority (or the Stewards exercising powers delegated to them) may penalise:
(h) Any person who administers, or causes to be administered, to a horse any prohibited substance;
(i) For the purpose of affecting the performance or behaviour of a horse in a race or of preventing it starting in a race.

The Stewards allege that prior to the race on 3 March 2016, Mr Leek administered, or caused to be administered, to Champagne Kisses a prohibited substance, being cobalt at a concentration in excess of 200 micrograms per litre in urine for the purpose of affecting the performance or behaviour of Champagne Kisses in the race.

Charge Two (AR 175(h)(ii)) – [Alternative to Charge One] - Administration of a prohibited substance which has been detected in a raceday sample
AR 175(h) provides that the Prinicpal Racing Authority (or the Stewards exercising powers delegated to them) may penalise:
(h)  Any person who administers, or causes to be administered, to a horse any prohibited substance;

(ii)  which is detected in any sample taken from such horse prior to or following the running of any race.
The Stewards allege that prior to the race on 3 March 2016, Mr Leek administered, or caused to be administered, to Champagne Kisses a prohibited substance being cobalt at a concentration in excess of 200 micrograms per litre in urine which was detected in a urine sample taken from Champagne Kisses prior to the running of the race.

Charge Three (AR 178) – [Alternative to Charges One and Two] - Presentation of a horse to race with a prohibited substance

AR 178 relevantly provides that:
…when any horse that has been brought to a racecourse for the purpose of engaging in a race and a prohibited substance is detected in any sample taken from it prior to or following its running in any race, the trainer and any other person who was in charge of such horse at any relevant time may be penalised.

The Stewards allege that on 3 March 2016, Mr Leek brought Champagne Kisses to the Pakenham Racecourse for the purpose of engaging in the Evergreen Turf F&M Maiden Plate (1400 metres) when a prohibited substance, being cobalt at a concentration in excess of 200 micrograms per litre in urine, was detected in a urine sample taken from Champagne Kisses prior to it running in the race.

Charge Four (AR 178F(1)) – Failure to record treatments and administration of treatments and medications
The Stewards allege that Mr Leek failed, in accordance with AR178F(1), to properly record all treatments and medications administered to Champagne Kisses.

Trevor J Andrews

Racing Victoria (RV) Stewards issued three charges, of which two are in the alternative, against licensed trainer Trevor J Andrews following an investigation into the circumstances that led to his horse, Coppola, returning a sample containing cobalt in excess of the permitted threshold of 100 micrograms per litre in urine.

A pre-race urine sample was taken from Coppola prior the gelding running unplaced in the IGA Liquor at Nhill Handicap (1726 metres) at Geelong on 4 December 2016.

The concentration of cobalt detected in the urine sample was determined by Racing Analytical Services Limited (RASL) to be 118 micrograms per litre (with a 10 microgram per litre measurement of uncertainty) and by Racing Chemistry Laboratory to be 120 micrograms per litre (with a 10 microgram per litre measurement of uncertainty).

The following three charges, of which two are in the alternative, have been laid against Mr Andrews under the Australian Rules of Racing:

Charge One (AR 175(h)(i)) – Administration of a prohibited substance for the purpose of affecting the performance or behaviour of a horse in a race
AR 175(h)(i) provides that the Principal Racing Authority (or the Stewards exercising powers delegated to them) may penalise:
(h) Any person who administers, or causes to be administered, to a horse any prohibited substance;
(i) For the purpose of affecting the performance or behaviour of a horse in a race or of preventing it starting in a race.

The Stewards allege that prior to the race on 4 December 2016, Mr Andrews administered, or caused to be administered, to Coppola a prohibited substance, being cobalt at a concentration in excess of 100 micrograms per litre in urine for the purpose of affecting the performance or behaviour of Coppola in the race.

Charge Two (AR 175(h)(ii)) – [Alternative to Charge One] – Administration of a prohibited substance which has been detected in a raceday sample
AR 175(h) provides that the Principal Racing Authority (or the Stewards exercising powers delegated to them) may penalise:
(h)  Any person who administers, or causes to be administered, to a horse any prohibited substance;

(ii)  which is detected in any sample taken from such horse prior to or following the running of any race.

The Stewards allege that prior to the race on 4 December 2016, Mr Andrews administered, or caused to be administered, to Coppola a prohibited substance being cobalt at a concentration in excess of 100 micrograms per litre in urine which was detected in a urine sample taken from Coppola prior to the running of the race.

Charge Three (AR 178) – [Alternative to Charges One and Two] – Presentation of a horse to race with a prohibited substance

AR 178 relevantly provides that:
…when any horse that has been brought to a racecourse for the purpose of engaging in a race and a prohibited substance is detected in any sample taken from it prior to or following its running in any race, the trainer and any other person who was in charge of such horse at any relevant time may be penalised.

The Stewards allege that on 4 December 2016, Mr Andrews brought Coppola to the Geelong Racecourse for the purpose of engaging in the IGA Liquor at Nhill Handicap (1726 metres) when a prohibited substance, being cobalt at a concentration in excess of 100 micrograms per litre in urine, was detected in a urine sample taken from Coppola prior to it running in the race.
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