Champion trainer Gai Waterhouse has been fined $2,000 for the race-day treatment of Melbourne Cup runner Tres Blue.
Waterhouse was quizzed by Racing Victoria stewards hours before the Cup after security guards witnessed a handler giving medication to Tres Blue for an irritated hoof.
The treating of horses on race day is not permitted, and the Australian Racing Board has introduced a mandatory six-month ban for the offence.
Stewards have said Tres Blue was allowed to run in the Cup because the treatment was “at the minor end of the scale” and that no prohibited substance was involved.
A Racing Appeals and Disciplinary (RAD) Board hearing today agreed Waterhouse’s culpability was at the lower end and that a fine was appropriate.
The same penalty was meted out last week to French trainer Mikel Delzangles, who pleaded guilty after a stable-hand placed an ulcer treatment in the mouth of 2011 Cup winner Dunaden.
No prohibited substance was detected in the medication, and Delzangles said his employee was unaware of the rules against race-day treatment.
At the Delzangles hearing, Racing Victoria integrity general manager Dayle Brown said it would be wrong to compare the case to that of Paul Beshara, who was banned for six months after he was charged with treating Happy Trails on race day in September.