4th February, 2014.

 

Mr. Pat Herbert
Head of Regulation
Irish Greyhound Board
Greenpark
Dock Road
Limerick

Dear Mr. Herbert,

We find your reply dated 3rd February 2014 somewhat misleading.

Can you please clarify what you mean by the Independent Control Committee?

We have read an article on your website about The Control Committee, so we are wondering could this be the committee that you are referring to.   The article is 15 pages in length covering all aspects of the Committee from its Establishment, Function etc.  We have read the article and in the entire 15 pages the ‘independent’ is not mentioned once.  We are not sure to whom you are trying to infer that this committee is independent of, we suspect you are suggesting that the Control Committee is independent of the Board.

We in North East Greyhound Owners & Breeders Association are very well aware of the work of the Control Committee and that samples obtained by authorised officials are sent to the National Greyhound Laboratory in Limerick for analysis.

You also make reference to the National Greyhound Laboratory.  Is this the Laboratory built by the IGB within its offices in Limerick?

Our correspondence of the 15th January 2014 predates the Bord na gCon Publication Report which was published in the Sporting Press of 30th January 2014.

The results published in this report dated back too July 2011,  November 2011, December 2011, May 2012, June 2012, August 2012, October 2012, November 2012, January 2013, March 2013, April  2013, May 2013 and July 2013.  A total of 17 positive results since 2011.  These tests are going back almost three years, can you please confirm that this is the complete list of all greyhounds that have tested positive during this period.

In your Statement of 28th May 2013 you state that in excess of 6000 samples for the detection of prohibitive substances were taken at licenced stadia in 2012.  Can you answer our question as to what percentage of these samples was positive for prohibitive substances?

Can you also tell us when was the last time the Control Committee Publication Report on positive samples was published in the Sporting Press?

Can you tell us when will all the results of samples taken in 2013 which were found to be positive be published by the Independent Control Committee?

It is the view of our members that results of all samples taken should be published on a weekly or fortnightly basis on the IGB website and also the Sporting Press.  We in North East Greyhound Owners & Breeders Association believe that it is in the interest of all owners, trainers and breeders that all sample results both negative and positive be made readily available to everyone.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

Martin Sharkey Chairman North East Greyhound Owners & Breeders Association

Brenda Powderly Secretary North East Greyhound Owners & Breeders Association

 

c.c.         Mr. Simon Coveney, Minister for Agriculture Food and the Marine

Mr. Tom Hayes, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine

Mr. John Mc Guinness, Chairman Public Accounts Committee

Mr. Tom Moran, Secretary General Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine

 

                                                    

 

Ms Brenda Powderly

Secretary North  East Greyhound Owners & Breeders Association

03 February 2014,

Dear Ms Powderly,

I acknowledge your recent correspondence  dated January 15″ 2014 .

As you and the  members  of the  North  East Greyhound  Owners & Breeders Association  should  be aware, publications  of this nature  are a matter  for the Independent  Control Committee.

Samples obtained  by authorised  officials for the purposes of prohibited   substance(s) detection   are sent to the  National  Greyhound  Laboratory  for  analysis. Samples that  return  a positive  result for  a prohibited  substance are referred  to the Independent  Control Committee  for determination.

Breaches in Regulation are published  by this Committee  in the Sporting  Press and I understand  that such a publication  is included in this week’s edition.

Yours sincerely

Pt~~

Pat Herbert

Head of Regulation

 

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15th January, 2014.

Mr. Pat Herbert
Head of Regulation
Irish Greyhound Board
Greenpark
Dock Road
Limerick.

Dear Mr Herbert,

At the Annual General Meeting of North East GOBA on Monday last 13th January grave concerns were raised with regard to the non publication of positive sample results by the IGB

In an IGB Regulatory Announcement on 28th May 2013 it was stated that in excess of 6000 samples for the detection of prohibited substances were procured at licenced stadia in 2012.

Head of Regulation Pat Herbert said “We leave no stone unturned when it comes to implementing our stringent and thorough integrity and sampling systems.  Bord na gCon have invested heavily over the past few years in developing industry integrity systems and greyhound racing is now probably the most tested sport in Ireland.”  (Copy of Regulatory Announcement 28/05/2013 enclosed)

Since July of last year owners and trainers were advised that on occasions they will be requested to re-kennel a greyhound for a period of up to one hour for the purpose of obtaining a post-race sample.   Owners and trainers have been quite willing to abide by this rule.

To date none of the results of these samples either negative or positive have been published by the IGB,   apart from a statement on the IGB Website Talking Dogs that all greyhounds tested in the 2013 ETS Greyhound Derby were negative.

This non publication of results has led to quite an extreme amount of rumour and speculation among greyhound owners, trainers and indeed patrons of greyhound racing in general as to a  ‘cover up’  of positive samples and the question of a ‘level playing field’ for all owners and trainers.

As you are aware this sort of speculation and rumour is extremely damaging to the integrity of the sport of greyhound racing

The members of North East GOBA are urgently requesting the immediate publication in the Sporting Press and on the IGB Website of all Positive samples without exception.   We would also like to know what percentage of the 6000 samples was positive.

Publication of these positive test results is now imperative to the ongoing integrity and management of the Greyhound Industry.  Bord na gCon has stated that it operates a ‘Zero Tolerance’ prohibited testing regime and we here in North East Greyhound Owners feel it is time for the IGB to prove their commitment to this.

Yours sincerely

Brenda Powderly Secretary North East Greyhound Owners & Breeders Association

Martin Sharkey Chairman North East Greyhound Owners & Breeders Association