Protecting the Integrity & Reputation of Irish Horseracing

Ger Fox (Rider) Referral - Banned Substance Penalty Review

The Referrals Committee, Justice Tony Hunt (in the chair), Justice Leonie Reynolds and Laurence McFerran met at the Offices of the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board (IHRB) on Friday 18th May 2018 to consider a review of the two year suspension imposed on Ger Fox, Rider as a result of him being found in breach of Rule 277(i) . As set out in the decision of the Referrals Committee of 30th November 2017, the suspension was to be reviewed in five and a half months during which time Mr Fox was required to submit to a random testing programme with Dr. Adrian McGoldrick.

At today’s hearing, evidence was heard from Dr. Adrian McGoldrick and Ger Fox. The committee also noted a letter received from Mr Fox’s employer; Gavin Cromwell, who confirmed that Mr Fox had been working as an assistant trainer while his jockey’s licence had been suspended and that he had his full support.

In his evidence, Dr. McGoldrick confirmed that Ger Fox had fully complied with all requests for random tests and all samples had tested negative for any prohibited substances.

In his evidence Ger Fox said that he deeply regretted the actions which had led to the adverse analytical finding and the breach of the Rules of Racing. He said he had learned from the experience and was eager to return to race riding. He also said that he would accept any conditions that the Referrals Committee felt were necessary. 

Having considered the evidence, the Referrals Committee decided to lift the suspension on Mr Fox’s licence from 30t May 2018 and to allow him to return to race riding on the condition that he submit to any in or out of competition testing required by the IHRB for the remaining 18 months of the suspension period. In addition, they advised that if there were any further breaches of rules in relation to anti-doping within 18 months from 30th May 2018; the suspended period of 18 months sanction may be reactivated in addition to any further sanctions which may be imposed in respect of the further offences.

Ger Fox was represented by Andrew Coonan, Solicitor, Coonan Cawley Solicitors, Wolfe Tone House, Naas Town Centre, Naas, Co. Kildare.

The case was presented by Cliodhna Guy, Head of Legal, Compliance & Licensing.


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