Trainer Con Karakatsanis and his father Tony’s credibility were put on the line when they were declared to be unreliable witnesses when found guilty of charges in the ongoing Howmuchdoyouloveme inquiry under the Racing Appeals And Disciplinary Board.
Con and Tony Karakatsanis will have to wait until next week to find out their fate after Judge Russell Lewis rejected the evidence submitted by the New South Wales trainer and his assistant relating to the finding of tubing gear in the stable of sprinter Howmuchdoyouloveme prior to his departure to Flemington to contest the Group 2 $300,000 Yellowglen Stakes(1200m) on November 3.
Con and Tony Karakatsanis both denied that the equipment discovered by stewards Dion Villela and Kane Ashby was to be used on Howmuchdoyouloveme but that was not accepted as Judge Lewis handed down his guilty decision.
“The Board finds both men were unreliable witnesses,” Judge Lewis said.
“The Board is far from impressed with his explanation.”
“Having considered both oral and documentary evidence the Board has come to the conclusion that version of events given by Tony and Con as to the critical issues should not be accepted,” Judge Lewis added.
Tony Karakatsanis gave evidence that he mistook the bag found in the stable with a bag with a biscuit of hay in it and Con’s accounts of locking the front gates was under suspicion.
“The Board is comfortably satisfied to draw the following inferences.”
“Tony was aware that the bag he was carrying to the box of Howmuchdoyouloveme contained tubing equipment,” Judge Lewis said.
“Con was in the process of locking the gates of the front gates of the stable.
“And both Tony and Con intended to tube the horse on race day prior to taking the horse to the races.
“On November 3 just before Howmuchdoyouloveme was to go to the races Tony Karakatsanis with prior knowledge and acquiescence of his son Con was preparing to stomach tube the horse.
“He had the time and opportunity to do so. As part of his preparation Tony had placed a bag containing some of the accoutrements of stomach tubing equipment in the horse’s box.
“Con was an active participant in the arrangements. He was in the process of securing the stable premises.”
The Racing Appeals & Disciplinary Board will hear submission on penalty following the guilty verdicts for Con and Tony on the charge of breaching AR 175(k) which reads as follows:
“The Committee of any Club or the Stewards may penalise: Any person, who has committed a breach of the Rules, or whose conduct or negligence has led or could have led to a breach of the Rules.”
As well Con was also been found guilty of one count of breaching AR 175(l) while Tony had to face two counts of breaching the same rule which states: “The Committee of any Club or the Stewards may penalise: Any person who attempts to commit, or conspires with any other person to commit, or any person who connives at or is a party to another committing any breach of the Rules.”
It was acknowledged during the inquiry that Howmuchdoyouloveme didn’t receive any race morning treatment before finishing eighth to Fontelina in the Yellowglen Stakes (1200m) as the $3.10 favourite.
The start before the four year old had blitzed the field in the Group 2 $220,000 Perri Cutten Caulfield Sprint (1100m) at Caulfield on October 20 also as favourite but at a subsequent start was also easily beaten when fifth to Mental in the Group 1 $1m Patinack Farm Classic (1200m) at Flemington on November 10.