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Stewards' Report - Roger James & Robert Wellwood

Racing Victoria (RV) Stewards, subsequent to their investigation, have issued two charges against Roger James and Robert Wellwood, as the trainers of Prowess (the Horse), under Australian Rules of Racing 240(2) and 104(1).

Charge One: AR 240 Prohibited substance in sample taken from horse at race meeting

(2) Subject to subrule (3), if a horse is brought to a racecourse for the purpose of participating in a race and a prohibited substance on Prohibited List A and/or Prohibited List B is detected in a sample taken from the horse prior to or following its running in any race, the trainer and any other person who was in charge of the horse at any relevant time breaches these Australian Rules.

The particulars of the charge are summarised as follows:

  • On 11 November 2023, the Horse was brought to the Flemington Racecourse and was engaged to run in Race 8, the TAB Champions Stakes, over 2000 metres (the Race), finishing sixth.
  • On 11 November 2023, a pre-race urine sample was taken from the Horse (the Sample).
  • An analysis of the Sample detected the presence of Phenylbutazone and its metabolites Oxyphenbutazone and Gamma-hydroxyphenylbutazone.
  • Phenylbutazone and its metabolites are considered prohibited substances pursuant to Division 1 of Part 2 of Schedule 1 (Prohibited list B) of the Australian Rules of Racing.

The presence of Phenylbutazone was detected in the Sample by Racing Analytical Services Limited and confirmed by the Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory.

Phenylbutazone is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory agent. It has analgesic (pain relieving), anti-inflammatory and antipyretic (fever suppression) properties and is registered for use in horses by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority.  The substance is, however, a prohibited substance under the Australian Rules of Racing when detected in a sample taken from a horse at a race meeting or trial (including an official trial or a jump-out for the purpose of obtaining a permit to start in a race). 

Charge Two: AR 104(1) Trainers must keep treatment records

(1) A trainer must record any medication or treatment administered to any horse in the   trainer’s care by midnight on the day on which the administration was given.
(2) For the purpose of subrule (1), each record of administration must include the following information:

(a) the name of the horse;
(b) the date and time of administration of the treatment or medication;
(c) the name of the treatment or medication administered (brand name or active constituent);
(d) the route of administration including by injection, stomach tube, orally, topical application or inhalation;
(e) the amount of medication given (if applicable);
(f) the duration of treatment (if applicable);
(g) the name and signature of the person/s administering and/or authorising the administration of the treatment or medication.
(h) the reason for administering the treatment or medication.

The particulars of the charge are summarised as follows:

  • On 22 December 2023, Mr James and Mr Wellwood were requested by Stewards to produce treatment records for the Horse.
  • Mr James’ and Mr Wellwood’s treatment records did not contain all the information as required by AR 104(2), including but not limited to times of administration, routes of administration, and the reason for administering the medication.

The charges issued against Mr James and Mr Wellwood will be heard before the Victorian Racing Tribunal on a date to be fixed.