Racing: Flood caught by CCTV and banned for two years

In an affair as sorry and sordid as any Dick Francis plot, the jump jockey turned trainer David Flood was yesterday warned off for two years after being found guilty of four charges relating to the unauthorised administration of a painkiller to a horse before Newmarket races last July. The penalty, imposed after an inquiry by the Jockey Club's disciplinary panel, starts a week today. Hugh Taylor, assistant to Flood at the time of the offence, was found guilty on three counts and banned for nine months.

The horse in question, Mossman Gorge, had been an intended runner in the second race on the summer course on 24 July, but was withdrawn by the stewards after a veterinary technician, routinely scanning the animal's identity microchip, spotted signs of a recent intravenous injection, and alerted the duty vet at the track. A bead of blood on Mossmann Gorge's neck, close to the jugular vein, was the give-away and the gelding subsequently tested positive for the prohibited substance bute, commonly given to mask pain or discomfort.

An investigation revealed that only Flood or Taylor could have given the injection. They were undone by CCTV footage at the racecourse stables which revealed they were the only ones to enter Mossman Gorge's box. The Jockey Club's citation would do credit to Sergeant Lewis. "At 12.51 hours, the gelding was led into the stable yard at the racecourse by Taylor and placed in box 40. Thereafter, until 13.17 hours, when the alarm was raised, only Flood and Taylor go into box 40. They spent one period of five minutes and another of two minutes in the box together, unobserved by the CCTV camera."

Despite protestations of innocence by the pair, the disciplinary panel found Flood in breach of the rules which cover testing positive to and administering a prohibited substance, doing so on a racecourse, and misleading stewards. Taylor's lesser guilt was in aiding and abetting, and misleading.

Flood relinquished his training licence shortly after the incident and both men have been working for the trainer Kevin McAuliffe. The stewards decided that, as the rules allow, Flood will be able to seek employment in racing after 17 months from next Wednesday.

The misleading of the stewards occurred during various interviews, when Flood changed his story about the administration of the injection, and its content, several times.

Flood gave up his licence at his Upper Lambourn yard following a major fall-out with his principal owner, Mark Serrell.

Mossmann Gorge, the innocent party, ran, and won, at Southwell yesterday for Mark Wellings, the trainer to whom he was transferred last year. The four-year-old is named after a Queensland beauty spot, which is, perhaps appropriately, located near Cape Tribulation.

The Champion Hurdle second favourite Macs Joy delighted his trainer, Jessica Harrington, in his final pre-Cheltenham gallop on the Curragh yesterday morning. The seven-year-old worked over 10 furlongs on the all-weather strip and Harrington said afterwards: "I was very happy with that. We'll just keep him ticking over now and he'll sail over on Saturday night."

Macs Joy, a winner at Gowran Park 18 days ago, will be joined on the ferry by his stablemate Moscow Flyer, who rather disappointed in his racecourse workout at Leopardstown on Sunday but will be trying for a third victory in the Queen Mother Champion Chase on Wednesday none the less. "He seems fine," added Harrington. "There is nothing clinically wrong with him, so we'll just have to see how he goes."

The Grand National winner Hedgehunter was given a vote of confidence yesterday by Mick Fitzgerald after his spin round Leopardstown. The Willie Mullins-trained gelding will be trying to become the first Aintree hero to follow up with a first-time win in the Gold Cup and Fitzgerald was mightily impressed with what he felt. "I could not help but be," he said. "He showed plenty of zest and jumped brilliantly. He was very strong at the end which is what you look for in a piece of work like that. In an open year he has a real live, each-way chance."

But the Irish invasion for the Festival was reduced by one yesterday when Justified was announced an absentee from Tuesday's Arkle Trophy by his trainer, Dusty Sheehy. The seven-year-old had been as low as 12-1 for the two-mile novices' crown but scoped badly after working last week. "You can't go to Cheltenham if you're not totally right," said Sheehy. "We'll look towards Fairyhouse or Punchestown with him now."

Chris McGrath

Nap: The Duke's Speech

(Catterick 3.00)

NB: Hits Only Life

(Southwell 4.10)

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Under the skin: Sarah Kane in May 1998
theatreThe story behind a new season of Sarah Kane plays
Arts and Entertainment
Preening: Johnny Depp in 'Mortdecai'
filmMortdecai becomes actor's fifth consecutive box office bomb
Sport
Bradford City's reward for their memorable win over Chelsea is a trip to face either Sunderland or Fulham (Getty)
football
News
Lars Andersen took up archery in his mid thirties
video
Voices
Focus E15 Mothers led a protest to highlight the lack of affordable housing in London
voicesLondon’s housing crisis amounts to an abuse of human rights, says Grace Dent
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Warehouse Operations & Logistics Manager

£38000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: One of the UK's best performing...

Recruitment Genius: GeoDatabase Specialist - Hazard Modelling

£35000 - £43000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our award-winning client is one...

Recruitment Genius: Compressed Air Pipework Installation Engineer

£15000 - £21000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This leading provider of Atlas ...

Recruitment Genius: Operations Coordinator - Pallet Network

£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Opportunity to join established...

Day In a Page

Syria crisis: Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more refugees as one young mother tells of torture by Assad regime

Celebrities call on David Cameron to take more Syrian refugees

One young mother tells of torture by Assad regime
The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back – with promising results

The enemy within

People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

'In Auschwitz you got used to anything'

Survivors of the Nazi concentration camp remember its horror, 70 years on
Autumn/winter menswear 2015: The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore

Autumn/winter menswear 2015

The uniforms that make up modern life come to the fore
'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

'I'm gay, and plan to fight military homophobia'

Army general planning to come out
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign

What the six wise men told Tony Blair

Months before the invasion of Iraq in 2003, experts sought to warn the PM about his plans. Here, four of them recall that day
25 years of The Independent on Sunday: The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century

25 years of The Independent on Sunday

The stories, the writers and the changes over the last quarter of a century
Homeless Veterans appeal: 'Really caring is a dangerous emotion in this kind of work'

Homeless Veterans appeal

As head of The Soldiers' Charity, Martin Rutledge has to temper compassion with realism. He tells Chris Green how his Army career prepared him
Wu-Tang Clan and The Sexual Objects offer fans a chance to own the only copies of their latest albums

Smash hit go under the hammer

It's nice to pick up a new record once in a while, but the purchasers of two latest releases can go a step further - by buying the only copy
Geeks who rocked the world: Documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry

The geeks who rocked the world

A new documentary looks back at origins of the computer-games industry
Belle & Sebastian interview: Stuart Murdoch reveals how the band is taking a new direction

Belle & Sebastian is taking a new direction

Twenty years ago, Belle & Sebastian was a fey indie band from Glasgow. It still is – except today, as prime mover Stuart Murdoch admits, it has a global cult following, from Hollywood to South Korea
America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

America: Land of the free, home of the political dynasty

These days in the US things are pretty much stuck where they are, both in politics and society at large, says Rupert Cornwell
A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A graphic history of US civil rights – in comic book form

A veteran of the Fifties campaigns is inspiring a new generation of activists
Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

Winston Churchill: the enigma of a British hero

A C Benson called him 'a horrid little fellow', George Orwell would have shot him, but what a giant he seems now, says DJ Taylor
Growing mussels: Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project

Growing mussels

Precious freshwater shellfish are thriving in a unique green project