Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Trainers baffled over breast cancer medication in horses

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Horse trainers are baffled as Racing Victoria prepares to lay charges over positive tests of a bizarre substance.

Stewards have been investigating for the past 12 months after a number of horses returned race day positives for formestane.

The drug is used to treat breast cancer in humans but is banned by the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA).

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It’s banned for athletes given it increases the production of hormones and testosterone in the body.

According to a report in The Age, stewards found traces of formestane in samples from five different horses between February and April last year.

Sirileo Miss ridden by Ben Melham at Moonee Ponds. Racing Photos via Getty Images

All five runners were stood down for 12 months. Their trainers are reportedly poised to be charged in the coming weeks.

Trainers have been unable to explain the presence of the drug in their runners, with one of them, Smiley Chan, reportedly leaving Australia and flying home to Hong Kong due to stress over the saga.

His horse Lake Tai was one of the five to test positive, and he suggested it may have been due to mice bait he purchased from Bunnings to spread around his stables.

The other horses to test positive last year were Alphaville (trained by Julius Sandhu), Circle Of Magic (Levi and Mark Kavanagh), Sirileo Miss (Symon Wilde), and Yulara (Amy and Ash Yargi).

Statements provided to Racing Victoria by both Kavangha and Yargi stables suggested contamination as the source of their positive results.

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