Non Raceday Inquiry – Request for Ruling – Decision dated 5 December 2022 – BANANARAHMA

ID: RIB14690

Sam Lennox - Trainer

Ms G Murrow - RIB Investigator

Geoff Hall

Persons Present:
On the papers

Information Number:

Decision Type:
Request for Ruling

804(1) - Prohibited substance

Request for Ruling:
Request for a Ruling in that "BANANARAHMA" be disqualified

Animal Name:


Race Date:

Race Club:
Waverley Race Club

Race Location:
Waverley Racecourse - Ihupuku Road, Waverley, 4510

Race Number:

Hearing Date:

Hearing Location:
On the papers

Outcome: Determination

Penalty: Horse BANANARAHMA is disqualified

The Informant, the Racing Integrity Board (RIB), seek a Ruling under r 804(1) of the New Zealand Rules of Racing disqualifying the horse BANANARAHMA from Race 7 at the Waverley Racing Club meeting on 21 October 2022.

Rule 804(1) states: “A horse which has been brought to a Racecourse or similar racing facility and which is found by a Tribunal conducting an inquiry to have had administered to it or have had present in its metabolism a Prohibited Substance shall be, in addition to any other penalty which may be imposed, disqualified for any Race … in which it has started on that day.”

Part A of the Prohibited Substances Regulations states: “1. The following substances are prohibited substances for the purpose of a horse racing on a Race day: 1.2. Substances falling within the following categories of substances: 1.2.37. corticosteroids”.

Summary of facts

The agreed summary of facts state:

  1. The Respondent, Sam Lennox, is the holder of a Class ‘B’ Trainers Licence issued by New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing.
  2. On 21 October 2022, the horse BANANARAHMA won Race 7, the Kawa Farms Maiden 1200 metres, at the Waverley Racing Club, earning gross stake money of $7,840.
  3. BANANARAHMA is a 5-year-old mare trained by Sam Lennox and owned by W Crowley, G Lennox, C & C Stewart and Sam Lennox.
  4. BANANARAHMA was post-race swabbed and on 21 November, New Zealand Racing Laboratory Services issued a Certificate of Analysis detailing the sample positive to the drug Dexamethasone.
  5. Dexamethasone is a corticosteroid and can be used in horses to treat allergic reactions such as respiratory allergies, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (heaves), hives, itching, and inflammatory diseases, including arthritis.
  6. Dexamethasone is a Prohibited Substance (1.2.37) within the meaning of the Rules and its presence in a race-day sample is, prima facie, a breach of the Rules.


  1. On 22 November, RIB Investigators visited the stables of Mr Lennox and commenced an investigation.
  2. It was established that on 27 September Veterinarian, Dr Jim Robbins attended Mr Lennox’s stables to scope BANANARAHMA. Dr Robbins also gave the horse 5 mls of ‘Trimedexil’ via intramuscular injection for an ongoing skin condition. ‘Trimedexil’ contains Dexamethasone and it also contains Trimethylacetate.
  3. The horse received no further medication prior to racing 24 days later.
  4. RIB Vet Advisor, Dr Andrew Grierson, was consulted regarding the properties and withhold times of ‘Trimedexil’. He advised that if sodium phosphate is added to the parent drug Dexamethasone, it makes it a water-soluble salt and elimination is quick but when Trimethylacetate is added it is insoluble and absorption from an intramuscular injection is both variable and prolonged.
  5. Dr Grierson referred to one study on Dexamethasone Trimethylacetate which described how the delayed absorption from the site of administration can have an effect on the horse for several weeks. He further advised there is no withholding time provided for Dexamethasone Trimethylacetate in the NZEVA guide for this reason.
  6. ‘Trimedexil’ is labelled primarily for use in bovine animals and all instructions and withholding information on the bottle refer to the treatment of cows. Other Dexamethasone products not containing Trimethylacetate are available.
  7. Dr Robbins acknowledges the issues raised but believed that the withhold time for the product was approximately 4 days.
  8. Mr Lennox had no knowledge of the product that Dr Robbins injected and trusted the instruction that by racing on 21 October 2022 he would be well clear of the withholding period.
  9. For this reason, Mr Lennox has been neither careless nor neglectful and should not be culpable for the positive sample.
  10. The matter of the veterinary administration in these circumstances is the matter of a separate investigation.
  11. Mr Lennox has no previous breaches of the Prohibited Substance Rule or any other NZTR Rules.
  12. Mr Lennox did not bet on the horse and betting analysis of the race revealed no anomalies.


BANANARAHMA was correctly entered and presented by Mr Lennox to race in Race 7, the Kawa Farms Maiden 1200m at the Waverley Racing Club on 21 October last, earning gross stake money of $7,840.

BANANARAHMA was post-race swabbed and on 21 November 2022, New Zealand Racing Laboratory Services issued a Certificate of Analysis detailing the sample positive to the drug Dexamethasone.

BANANARAHMA has tested positive for Dexamethasone. Dexamethasone is a corticosteroid. Thus, it is a Prohibited Substance within the meaning of cl 1.2.37 of the Prohibited Substances Regulations.

Mr Lennox consents to the disqualification of BANANARAHMA.

The Adjudicative Committee rules pursuant to r 804(1) of the Rules of Racing that BANANARAHMA is disqualified from Race 7 at the Waverley Racing Club meeting on 21 October last.

Amended placings are:

1st       12     MAKETAWA MISS

2nd      6       BELLE’S ECHO

3rd       1       HEMI RIDAPEST

4th       8       NASSAU

5th       13     STOLEN SPIRIT

Stakes are to be paid accordingly.

Decision Date: 05/12/2022

Publish Date: 19/01/2023