Connections and punters will have to wait until Racing New South Wales stewards give the all clear for favourite El Roca to take his place in the Group 2 $200,000 Hobartville Stakes (1400m) at Rosehill today.
Stewards ordered blood tests from El Roca and opened an inquiry when the surveillance team discovered that the New Zealand colt had been treated with an alkaline substance at 6AM on Friday morning, which is against the rules of racing.
Chief stewards Ray Murrihy said the wait was unfortunate but they had to wait for the results of the blood test taken from El Roca when he arrived at the track.
“Nathan Haywood (Racing NSW) and his team, went through Waterhouse’s stables and a few others at Randwick, they went through Trent Busuttin’s treatment records and found the horse had been treated on Friday morning at 6am,” Murrihy said.
“It doesn’t comply with the Australian Rules, but unfortunately it complies with the Victorian Rules and it was the Randwick Equine Centre vet, we have interviewed them and we are waiting on what the TC02 reading is.
“The rule states that you can’t give an alkaline agent on the day of the race or one clear day before.”
El Roca currently heads the Ladbrokes.com.au market order for the Hobartville Stakes at $2.50 after comfortably winning the Listed $125,000 Eskimo Prince Stakes (1200m) at Rosehill on February 15.
The Gai Waterhouse trained Woodbine has had solid support and is now the second pick at $6 just in front of the Peter Moody trained Dissident and Kiwi colt Atlante both at $6.50 with Waterhouse’s other runner Romantic Touch marked as a $7.50 chance.