USA: O’Neill set to contest 45-day carbon-dioxide ban

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By Nicholas Godfrey
Racing Post

USA: Trainer Doug O’Neill, denied a shot at the Triple Crown by I’ll Have Another’s injury the day before the Belmont Stakes, plans to appeal against his recent 45-day ban.

The Californian-based trainer told the Daily Racing Form that he will contest last month’s decision by the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) after Argenta tested in excess of the permitted level of carbon dioxide at Del Mar in 2010.

“I’ll fight it until I can’t fight it anymore,” O’Neill told the Form.

Although the carbon dioxide test is used to uncover cases of ‘milkshaking’ – an illicit practice designed to boost stamina – in publishing the decision to ban O’Neill the CHRB said it was satisfied there has been no deliberate malpractice by the trainer.

However, he was banned because the trainer is held responsible for the result.

“He said he found no wrongdoing,” O’Neill added. “They have said it could have been Lasix, sweat, or feed. Those are things trainers can’t control. There’s no motive. The horse didn’t win. It’s ridiculous.”

View the original article at the Racing Post

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