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Kavanagh Banned For 9 Years

Tuesday, 22nd September 2015

Trainer Sam Kavanagh has been banned for a period of 9 years and 3 months and fined $3,000 by Racing NSW stewards following the conclusion of the long-running Midsummer Sun cobalt inquiry. In August, Kavanagh was found guilty of 23 out of 24 charges relating to cobalt, caffeine, corticosteroid and Xenon gas use on horses in his care. Stewards said they believed the penalty to be fair when taking into account all of the factors, including the need to impose an appropriate penalty that reflects community standards in regard to integrity and welfare issues, as well as the fundamental requirement to deter similar conduct in the future. Stewards pointed out that Kavanagh's case differed to that of Newcastle trainer Darren Smith who was banned for 15 years, stating: "...the conduct did not solely relate to administration of cobalt. Accordingly, caution should be exercised when comparing the above total penalty to that imposed in other cases, for example in the matter of Mr Darren Smith (which involved many more horses and higher elevated readings)." The penalty was backdated to commence from the 20th May 2015, the date upon which Kavanagh's training licence was suspended. The disqualification period will therefore expire on the 20th August 2024. Racing NSW stewards also handed down penalty to several other persons including Kavanagh's vet, Dr Tom Brennan, who was banned for a total of 6 years. To read more and to view the full stewards report click here.

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