Williams in Clear After Ibuprofen Positive: Racing.Com 2/7/17

By: Racing.Com Staff

Warrnambool trainer Matthew Williams has been cleared of any rule breach, following an investigation into a raceday Ibuprofen detection in galloper Oregon Spirit.

Oregon Spirit was set to race at Flemington on December 10, but was scratched at the barriers on veterinary advice after rearing in the gates.

As it happened, the horse was found to have Ibuprofen in its system that day, despite coming up clear in three elective tests via Racing Analytical Services Limited undertaken by Williams prior to raceday.

As such, Racing Victoria stewards found Williams was not deemed liable for the Ibuprofen positive.

“Racing Victoria stewards have concluded their investigation into Mr Williams’ horse, Oregon Spirit, and are satisfied he has acted in accordance with the Rules of Racing,” a statement from RV chairman of stewards Terry Bailey said.

“This particular case is consistent with a number of others that stewards have been investigating which relate to the administration of Ibuprofen on horses conducted during a rehabilitation regime outside the care of their trainers.

“While Ibuprofen is, and still remains, a prohibited substance under the rules, the trainer elected to have three urine tests conducted on Oregon Spirit in good faith prior to the horse being brought to race at Flemington Racecourse on 10 December, 2016.

“On all three occasions the horse tested negative to the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory, but then returned a positive sample during a post-race examination following its scratching at the barriers.

“This case highlights how complex the prolonged use of this substance is in racehorses because of its erratic and unpredictable clearance from their system.

“For this reason, stewards have elected not to charge Mr Williams who has advised us of his intentions to retire and re-home Oregon Spirit.”

Oregon Spirit won eight times and placed another 16 from 50 starts, 49 of those being under Peter Moody.

The horse collected $434,613 in stakes, with his highlight victory being the Listed Lord Stakes in Adelaide in 2013.