QRIC clarifies current cobalt Inquiries

The Queensland Racing Integrity Commission (QRIC) has today moved to make its position clear about the status of unresolved cobalt Inquiries after receiving clarification from Racing Australia (RA).

Racing Integrity Commissioner Ross Barnett said that in light of RA providing information about the current status of cobalt as a prohibited substance, all Queensland cobalt Inquiries currently in process would continue to be dealt with in accordance with the rules.

“Racing Australia CEO Barry O’Farrell has advised me of the following today;

“I write to advise that Racing Australia’s August Board meeting did not determine to initiate a review into cobalt “…including inter alia, matters that surround the science, laboratory testing procedures and penalties…” or take any action which justifies the Australian Trainer’s Association’s (ATA) request for a suspension/deferral by Principal Racing Authorities /integrity bodies of charges/cases relating to cobalt,” Mr O’Farrell said.

“Mr O’Farrell has made it clear today that RA has not determined to initiate a review into cobalt, it has however established a working party of veterinarians and analysts to provide the RA Board with advice on the following issues only;

  • The merits of a total ban on the use of injectable products containing cobalt salts; and
  • cobalt regulation in relation to out of competition testing.

Commissioner Barnett said he supported Racing Australia’s approach which was to remove the emotion, seek expert advice and establish the facts to enable its Board to make an informed decision.

“The National racing bodies set the rules of racing and it is the role of the Commission to enforce them,” he said.


Media contact Vincene Overs 0472 842 346