Protecting the Integrity & Reputation of Irish Horseracing

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Liam Quinlan (Rider) – Application to review suspension

The Referrals Committee, Mr. Justice Tony Hunt (in the chair), Mr. Nick Wachman and Mr. Laurence McFerran convened in the Offices of the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board on Monday, 9th January 2023 to consider an application from Liam Quinlan (Rider) to review the suspension imposed on him at a Referral Hearing on Monday, 11thApril 2022.

At that hearing, the Referrals Committee found Mr. Quinlan in breach of Rule 277(i) in that samples of urine taken from him during in competition testing at Limerick on 16th November 2021 was found to contain Benzoylecgonine (metabolite of cocaine). They imposed a penalty of four years suspension of his licence but the committee stated they would consider an application to suspend the penalty from 11th January 2023 should Mr. Quinlan comply with strict terms and conditions.

At the Referral Hearing to consider his application, evidence was heard from Mr. Paddy Kennedy, solicitor, on behalf of Mr. Quinlan, Dr. Jennifer Pugh, IHRB Senior Medical Officer, and John Patrick Ryan, Trainer was also considered.

In his evidence, Mr. Kennedy outlined details of Mr. Quinlan’s extensive rehabilitation programme and noted correspondence from Mr. Pat Brennan, addiction counsellor.

In her evidence, Dr. Pugh outlined the continuous engagement she has had with Mr. Quinlan and Mr. Brennan in relation to Mr. Quinlan’s rehabilitation programme.

In his evidence, Mr. Ryan outlined Mr. Quinlan’s dedication to his employment and outlined his routine and that he would continue to support Mr. Quinlan.

Having considered the evidence, the panel decided to permit Mr. Quinlan to apply for a new licence and advised the Licensing Committee that the panel had no objection to the grant of a new licence as and from the 11th January 2023. If granted, that new licence will be subject to a suspended penalty of three years and three months for a period of three years and three months. In permitting Mr. Quinlan to apply for the issue of a new licence, the panel took account of the extensive rehabilitation programme which Mr. Quinlan completed, the positive engagement with Mr. Brennan and Dr. Pugh and also the continuous support of Mr. Ryan. The panel advised Mr. Quinlan that any further breach of this rule or failure to comply with any requests from Dr. Pugh would trigger the suspended period of three years and three months of his previous suspension as well as an additional period of suspension for a further breach.

The case was presented by Mr. Michael Daly, IHRB Regulatory Legal Advisor. Mr. Quinlan was represented by Mr. Patrick Kennedy of Patrick J. O’Meara Solicitors, Thurles, County Tipperary.

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