On 12 April 2017,(HRSA) Stewards conducted an inquiry into a report received from Racing Analytical Services Ltd (RASL) that Cobalt was detected in a urine sample taken from GENUINE EXCUSE NZ prior to it competing in Race 9, Farewell Come On Frank Pace at Globe Derby Park on 7 January 2017.
The B sample was confirmed above the threshold by the ChemCentre in Western Australia.
Evidence was taken from trainerregarding his feeding and treatment regime including his possible explanation for the elevated readings.
Mr Tardio pleaded guilty to a charge pursuant to Australian Harness Racing Rule 190(1),(2) &(4) in that he presented GENUINE EXCUSE NZ to race at Globe Derby Park on 7 January 2017 not free of a prohibited substance.
Mr Tardio was disqualified for 2 years effective immediately and ordered to pay $1500 to HRSA to cover costs incurred including analytical testing.
Acting under Rule 195 GENUINE EXCUSE NZ was disqualified from its seventh placing and all placings amended accordingly.
In determining penalty, Stewards took into account:
- his guilty plea
- the period of time Mr Tardio has been involved in training horses
- the penalties applied in other Cobalt cases in SA and other States
- the personal circumstances of Mr Tardio.
Mr Tardio was advised his rights of appeal.
ACTING CHAIRMAN OF STEWARDS