Pelletier Handed Huge Suspension, Fine

Published: February 13, 2013 03:18 pm EST

On Wednesday, February 13, the Ontario Racing Commission announced via a notice to the industry that licensee Bertrand Pelletier is immediately under suspension and is facing a 14-year suspension and $60,000 fine.

The suspension and fine come after a horse trained by Pelletier produced a positive test for Erythropoietin (EPO), more specifically Darbepoetin-alfa (DPO).

The official ORC release on the situation appears below in its entirety.

Immediate Suspension – Darbepoetin-alpha present in horse Proposed order issued for 14 year suspension and fine $60,000

On February 7, 2013, the Director ordered the immediate suspension of Bertrand Pelletier of Mont-St-Gregoire, Québec. In addition, the Director has issued a proposed order to suspend for a period of 14 years, with a $60,000 fine.

On August 5, 2012, the horse, Perubydooby was entered to race at Rideau Carleton Raceway. Prior to the race, the track equipment judge inspected Perubydooby and observed a scratch mark along the right side of the neck below the tattoo, which she reported to the ORC Official Veterinarian. Following an examination, Out-of-Competition blood samples were taken from the horse.

At all material times, Mr. Pelletier was the owner of the horse, Perubydooby, and was officially named trainer of record by the Judges.

On August 27, 2012, an Analysis Report indicated that the sample from Perubydooby tested positive for EPO (Erythropoietin). On February 4, 2013, Confirmatory Testing of Perubydooby's blood sample confirmed the specific presence of Darbepoetin-alfa.

Darbepoetin-alfa (DPO) is classed as a potent long-lasting form of Erythropoietin (EPO). EPO/DPO has no legitimate use for a horse that is racing. It not only places the horse at risk, it imperils the future of the horse racing industry.

Ontario’s horse racing community is made up of horsepeople, racetracks and associations. As a key partner in the efforts to protect the integrity of horse racing, that community is demonstrating its support of ORC intelligence-led investigative efforts. This case is an excellent example of the ORC's Out of Competition Testing Program working in partnership with our Racetrack Officials to identify and catch those who break the rules.

As a regulated industry in Ontario, the provision of services in racing requires that Licensees demonstrate the utmost honesty and integrity. All Licensees must be aware of and comply with the Racing Commission Act, the Rules, and the terms of the licence in order to maintain the confidence of the public in the integrity of racing.

Steve Lehman
Executive Director

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