Moody should remember there are two sides to every story   Leave a comment

Moody should remember there are two sides to every story

July 19, 2015 – 5:21PM

In a radio interview last Friday, Peter Moody went on the attack and criticised many in racing including Racing Victoria, the Australian Trainers Association and sections of the racing media.

One might question the motivation behind his attacks, just seven days after he was issued with three charges over high cobalt levels in his horse Lidari, including the very serious charge of administration.

In the interview, Moody took aim at RV’s integrity department, saying he was extremely disappointed to be charged with administration and although he had done nothing wrong he accepted the charge of presenting Lidari at the races with elevated cobalt levels.

Moody questioned the science around cobalt, saying there had not been enough research done on it, it was new and that he was only using a hoof supplement which contained high concentrations of cobalt. The trouble with this is that while the research on cobalt is new, it doesn’t make it lesser science.

The worldwide push to eradicate cobalt collaboration between all racing jurisdictions has produced a wealth of information on cobalt. What is known is this: normal use of cobalt supplements will not take a horse over the threshold. Cobalt is poorly absorbed so oral supplements will not cause high levels. Cobalt is cleared from the body within a few hours, which poses a problem for these trainers, as in Australia, raceday treatments are banned.

On the basis of this science, RV have charged four trainers over nine horses with elevated cobalt readings. The science of cobalt might well be tested at the forthcoming Racing Appeals and Disciplinary board meetings, and Fairfax Media understands Racing Victoria’s integrity department are very comfortable with their position on the cobalt science.

One should also remember that there are only nine positives amongst thousands of cobalt test results. The acceptance of a presentation charge might be borne out by the belief that it is a lesser charge with a lesser penalty. This belief is not supported historically, as Sharron Taylor, the only horse trainer to date charged purely with presentation, was clubbed with a two-year disqualification by Racing Western Australia but received a six-month reduction because of her immediate guilty plea and her co-operation with stewards.

One could cynically say that accepting presentation but rejecting administration is akin to a driver blowing 0.1 at the booze bus then agreeing to charges, but not wanting to be labelled a drunk driver.

Moody also attacked the restrictions on raceday treatments, saying they were impossible to comply with for trainers with large teams and represented Victorian racing as a “nanny state”.

Fairfax Media spoke with two other trainers with large teams of horses who disagreed with Moody and said they had implemented systems to prevent any breaches of raceday treatment. They said the “no raceday treatment rule” was good for racing and the image of racing, meaning horses competed on ability and training alone.

Moody was highly critical of the ATA and said he had resigned from both the committee and the association. He felt that the ATA did not represent members on issues that matter.

This criticism highlights the difficult role the ATA has in trying to represent everyone equally. There are more than 900 trainers in Victoria, from the hobby trainer with two horses to the big trainers with 100 or more. Some in the ATA believe it is vitally important that the ATA listen to and represent the little trainers who otherwise would have no voice.

Finally Moody, who is influential in the industry, was critical of some sections of the racing media for reporting the troublesome side of his cobalt problem. I have no doubt Moody is taking aim at this journalist as he rang me after I reported a recent worldwide survey testing 10,300 racehorses on cobalt including those on cobalt supplements where the highest recorded reading was a paltry 78. After that article Moody told me I “was banned for life”, a significant threat from a leading trainer to a journalist who makes his living by reporting racing.

One can assume Moody was not having a crack at other journalists. It should be remembered some work for the industry media arm RSN and The media have a responsibility to report any story without any fear or favour. Like it or not, Peter Moody, a leading trainer of champion mare Black Caviar, being charged with cobalt administration and facing a possible three years in the wilderness, banned from his sport, is a very big story about a big bloke from Queensland.


Posted July 20, 2015 by belesprit09 in Uncategorized

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