February 18, 2016
McGregor disqualified from racing for 18 months
Racing Queensland Stewards have today disqualified harness trainer Paul McGregor from racing for a period of 18 months effectively immediately after he pleaded guilty to presenting a horse with elevated cobalt levels.
At an inquiry held into a post-race urine sample taken from GOTTA GO ARTELECT (NZ) following its winning performance in Race 6 at Albion Park on Tuesday, 30 June 2015, McGregor pleaded guilty to a charge under Rule 190 (1) in that he presented the horse with the prohibited substance cobalt above the prescribed threshold.
In determining an appropriate penalty in this matter, RQ Stewards gave consideration to the following:
- The serious nature of the substance concerned and the level of Cobalt recorded (250Ug/L)
- No previous offences under this rule in a licence history of 28 years;
- The particular circumstances of the case;
- The need for a penalty to serve as a deterrent to illustrate that drug free racing is of paramount importance to the integrity of harness racing;
- Penalty precedents;
- Mr McGregor’s guilty plea; and
- The manner in which he conducted himself throughout the inquiry.
Stewards further directed that under Rule 195 GOTTA GO ARTELECT (NZ) be disqualified from its win in Race 6 at Albion Park on 30 June 2015 and all other placegetters be amended accordingly.
Mr McGregor was advised of his rights of appeal.
Racing Queensland is due to conduct seven other inquiries relating to horses returning elevated cobalt levels across the three racing codes in the coming weeks.
No mandatory three year penalty a penalty based on the facts and circumstances as outlined...still he has a right of appeal.