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Vic Stewards Warn O'Brien On Twitter Comments

Friday, 25th May 2012

Racing Victoria stewards concluded an inquiry "into comments made by licensed trainer Danny O'Brien on Twitter last Saturday (19 May) pertaining to the Flemington race meeting & the condition of the track". O'Brien was interviewed on the day by stewards "regarding a Tweet he issued after 2 horses, Absolute Spirit (Race 1) & Sparks Burn (Race 3), broke down at the finishing post & the 150m mark respectively & were humanely euthanased". O'Brien stated he "wanted to make a point of discussion because, in his view, the Flemington track was not up to standard or presented in the condition of a premier metropolitan track". O'Brien "clarified that he was not in a position to know why the 2 runners were injured & that he believed there was no definitive answer as to why the injuries had occurred". Upon reviewing the evidence, stewards considered O'Brien's Tweet "as inappropriate & provocative; however it is their view that the comment made did not breach the Rules Of Racing, specifically those pertaining to conduct prejudicial to the image of racing". Stewards issued a warning to O'Brien, advising him that "any comments made by a licensed person on social media networks will be treated as comments made in person & should therefore be professional & not of a nature that may realise a breach of the Rules Of Racing". O'Brien was further notified that "should he have concerns with any aspects of the industry in relation to his training or racing enterprise, there are various avenues within the industry to have these matters properly heard & dealt with". O'Brien was also referred to the Racing Victoria "Use of Social Media by Racing Victoria Licensed Personnel" which is posted on racingvictoria.net.au.

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