Protecting the Integrity & Reputation of Irish Horseracing

E.J. O'Grady / Knockavardagh Referral

Mr. E.J. O’Grady  -  “Knockavardagh”  -  Identity Query

The Referrals Committee, Mr. Martin P. O’Donnell (in the Chair), Mr. T.L. Crawford and Mr. Joseph M. McGrath, met at Leopardstown Racecourse on Thursday 22nd July, 2010, to consider a referral from Josh Byrne, Registrar of the I.N.H.S. Committee, concerning the identification of “Knockavardagh” trained by Mr. E.J. O’Grady, which was due to run at Wexford Racecourse on 11th June, 2010, in the Vinegar Hill Maiden Hurdle, but was withdrawn by order of the Stewards as the Veterinary Surgeon on duty, Mr. Andrew Tyrrell, was unable to positively identify the animal from the passport documentation presented.

Evidence was heard from Mr. E. J. O’Grady who explained the background to the mistaken identity.  The Committee also considered DNA reports and markings certificates from Weatherbys Ireland Laboratories for “Knockavardagh” and another animal in the trainer’s care, “Lanespark”.

The Committee, having considered the evidence, noted that the animal produced to run as “Knockavaradagh” at Wexford Racecourse on 11th June was in fact “Lanespark”.  They were satisfied that Mr. O’Grady had confused the identity of both animals in his care, noting that they were of similar identity with no distinguishable markings.  The trainer also explained that the majority of his horses had returned home for the summer period and, while transferring horses from his other stables to the main stable, the interchange had occurred.

The Committee were also satisfied that Mr. O’Grady was guilty of an error of judgement for failing to produce the correct animal to run at Wexford Racecourse on 11th June and therefore fined him €400.

The case was presented to the Committee by Mr. Josh Byrne, Registrar, I.N.H.S. Committee.


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