Protecting the Integrity & Reputation of Irish Horseracing

Paul Nolan - Articular Referral

Paul Nolan – “Articular” – Identity Query

The Referrals Committee, Neville O’Byrne (in the chair), Ms. Meta Osborne and J.R. Craigie met in the Turf Club, The Curragh, Co. Kildare, to consider the referral from Denis Egan, Chief Executive of the Turf Club, concerning the identification of “Articular” trained by Paul Nolan, which was due to run at Fairyhouse on 29th January 2011, in the Ratoath (Pro/Am) I.N.H.S. Flat Race but was withdrawn by order of the Stewards as the Veterinary Surgeon on duty, S.W.D. McIlveen, was unable to positively identify the animal from the passport documentation presented.

Evidence was heard from Paul Nolan, trainer, who explained the background to the mistaken identify.  He also told the Committee that he had now purchased a microchip reader to ensure that a similar problem would not arise in the future and apologised for any inconvenience caused.  In addition the Committee considered DNA reports and markings certificates from Weatherbys Ireland Laboratories for “Articular”.

The Committee having considered the evidence noted that the animal produced to run as “Articular” by Revoque (IRE) – Roxelly (IRE), at Fairyhouse on 29th January was in fact an unnamed 2007 Bay Gelding by Close Conflict (USA) – Roxelly (IRE).  They were satisfied that the problem arose as the owner had sent the wrong horse to Mr. Nolan as he had confused the identity of both animals, noting that they were of similar identity.  They also noted that Mr. Nolan had not checked the microchip number of the horse when it arrived in his yard.

The Committee were satisfied that Paul Nolan was guilty of an error of judgement for failing to produce the correct animal to run at Fairyhouse on 29th January and they therefore fined him €400.  They also advised Mr. Nolan to ensure that the identities of all horses under his care are checked prior to running at the racecourse.

The Committee ordered that the name “Articular” should now be registered to the Bay Gelding (2007) by Close Conflict (USA) – Roxelly (IRE) and not the Bay Gelding (2006) by Revoque (IRE) – Roxelly (IRE).

The case was presented to the Referrals Committee by Denis Egan, Chief Executive of the Turf Club.


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