Mahmood Al Zarooni withdraws appeal against eight-year training ban

Al Zarooni was found guilty of administering anabolic steroids to 15 horses

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The Independent Online

Mahmood Al Zarooni has withdrawn his appeal against an eight-year disqualification from training, said the British Horseracing Authority.

Al Zarooni, 37, was found guilty of administering anabolic steroids to 15 horses in his care at a BHA hearing on April 25.

The former Godolphin handler was officially charged with rule breaches related to prohibited substances, duty to keep medication records, and conduct prejudicial to racing.

Al Zarooni stated on May 7 he will contest the severity of the suspension, but the BHA said it received notice from his solicitors that he will no longer be appealing.

The Dubai-born handler, who trained at Moulton Paddocks in Newmarket, had admitted to all of the breaches of the rules.

He also apologised for his actions at the hearing, at which he waived the right of legal representation.

Al Zarooni was, according to the BHA's official findings, guilty of a "widespread systematic misuse of illegal substances".

The case has widely regarded to be the most serious doping scandal in recent British racing history.

Godolphin principal Sheikh Mohammed said he was "appalled and angered" by Al Zarooni's actions.

The BHA tweeted: "BHA has received notice from the solicitors of Mahmood Al Zarooni that he has withdrawn his appeal regarding his eight-year disqualification."

Last year's Ladbrokes St Leger winner Encke was last week the highest-profile name among seven further Al Zarooni-trained horses to test positive for anabolic steroids.

Testing at the other Godolphin yard of Saeed bin Suroor returned no positive results for banned substances, the BHA said.