25 Nov 2009

Oliver to appeal suspension

5:52 am on 25 November 2009

The Australian jockey Damien Oliver will appeal against the severity of a one-month suspension after returning a positive urine sample to the prohibited substance ephedrine when tested on Derby Day at Flemington on October 31st.

The random sample was taken during the meeting as part of Racing Victoria's rider sampling program.

Oliver pleaded guilty to the charge but the Australian Jockeys' Association stated in a press release that he returned the positive test with traces of a "herbal supplement" found in a sample.

Oliver claimed in the AJA release that he had been taking the supplement since 2000 without any previous issues.

He will be contesting the severity of the penalty handed down by RVL stewards, believing it is highly excessive based on penalties previously imposed in other cases.

As it stands Oliver is free to return to race riding on December 26th.

He will miss the ride on Apache Cat in the Hong Kong Sprint at Sha Tin on December 13th.