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P. K. Donovan (Rider) Appeal – Cork 26th November 2023

The Appeals Body, Mr. N. B. Wachman (Chairperson), Mr. Peter N. Reynolds and Mr. Anthony Byrne convened at the Offices of the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board on Tuesday, 5th December 2023 to consider the appeal of Phillip Donovan (Rider) against the decision of the Raceday Stewards at Cork on Sunday, 26th November 2023.

Following the running of the Adare Manor Opportunity Handicap Hurdle, the Raceday Stewards found Mr. Donovan, rider of Thelonglad, in breach of Rule 214 in that he had ridden improperly. Having considered his record in this regard they suspended him for 10 racedays.

The grounds of appeal lodged by Mr. Donovan was against the severity of the sanction imposed.

At the Appeal Hearing evidence was heard from Mr. Donovan and the Appeals Body also watched a recording of the race.

In his evidence Mr. Donovan accepted that he was in breach of riding improperly but felt that the penalty imposed was severe. He stated that he had misjudged his ride on the day by moving across to his right in an attempt to hold his position and having been out injured for eight weeks earlier in the year he was just overly determined to achieve his best possible placing. 

Having considered the evidence, the Appeals Body felt there was mitigating factors in line with the penalty guidelines which warranted the suspension imposed to be reduced to seven racedays.  

The appeal was presented by Mr. Andrew Coonan of Coonan Cawley Solicitors, Naas, County Kildare. The IHRB was represented by Ms. Clíodhna Guy, Head of Licensing, Legal and Compliance and Mr. Andrew Ring, IHRB Stipendiary Steward.

Dates of suspension: 10th, 12th, 14th, 16th, 17th, 26th, 27th December.

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