Protecting the Integrity & Reputation of Irish Horseracing

J.P. O'Brien Appeal - Listowel 13th Sept 2010

The Appeals Body, Division Two, J.R. Craigie (in the Chair), John Moloney and Mrs. J. O. Onions met in the Turf Club, The Curragh, Co Kildare on 12th October 2010 to consider an appeal from J.P. O’Brien, apprentice jockey, against the severity of the ban imposed on him by the Stewards at Listowel on 13th September 2010 when, following the running of the Irish Stallion Farms European Breeders Fund Premier Nursery Handicap, he was suspended for four race days for careless riding.  He also appealed the entire validity of the suspension imposed bearing in mind that it appeared from a transcript of the evidence that the Stewards in imposing the four day suspension took into consideration matters which were not properly before them.

Evidence was heard from P.F. Graffin and Paul Murtagh, stewards secretaries at Listowel who confirmed that the Stewards at Listowel did not take into account the two day ban imposed on J.P. O’Brien at Dundalk when imposing the penalty, even though it appeared on his disciplinary record, they confirmed that the Stewards were aware that this ban was under appeal.  This fact was also confirmed in writing by John Powell who was Chairman of Stewards at Listowel.  An issue had arisen in relation to this as the recording equipment was not working for part of the enquiry. 

In relation to the incident, evidence was heard from J.P. O’Brien, rider of Treasure Beach (GB), A.P. O’Brien, trainer of Treasure Beach (GB) and master of J.P. O’Brien and C. O’Donoghue, rider of Jamesie, who was involved in the incident.  Videos of the race were also reviewed.

Having considered the evidence, the Appeals Body dismissed the appeal in relation to the validity of the suspension imposed.  In arriving at this decision they took into account advices received from Andrew Cody, Legal Assessor.  They also dismissed the appeal in relation to the severity of the ban and confirmed the four race day ban (16th, 17th, 20th and 22nd October).  They also ordered that a contribution of €500 be paid towards Turf Club costs.

The case was presented by Denis Egan, Chief Executive of the Turf Club, Curragh, Co Kildare.  J.P. O’Brien was represented by Andrew Coonan, Coonan Cawley Solicitors, Naas, Co Kildare.  Andrew Cody of Reidy, Stafford Solicitors, Newbridge, Co Kildare acted as Legal Assessor.


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