Suspension Casts Doubt On Easter Egg Favourite

SATURDAY night’s Golden Easter Egg has been thrown into turmoil after Karina Britton, trainer of race favourite Wow, was suspended on Thursday.

Adam Dobbin

8 April 2021

SATURDAY night’s Golden Easter Egg has been thrown into turmoil after Karina Britton, trainer of race favourite Wow, was interim-suspended by the Greyhound Welfare & Integrity Commission (GWIC) on Thursday.

The decision to place an interim-suspension on the trainer gives Britton until 4pm on Thursday to lodge an application to transfer the two-time Group 1 winner to another kennel so he can take his place in Saturday night’s showpiece event.

If GWIC doesn’t receive an application to transfer the dog, Wow could be sensationally scratched from the $250,000-to-the-winner Group 1 feature this weekend.

Back on March 4 it was revealed that Wow had returned a swab irregularity to a category 1 prohibited substance following his epic victory in January’s Group 1 Paws Of Thunder Final at Wentworth Park.

That irregularity resulted in the son of Fernando Bale being scratched from the Richmond Derby on the eve of the Group 2 event as the Commission awaited a subsequent negative swab from the star sprinter so he could return to racing.

Following the receipt of a clear sample Wow was free to take his place in the Golden Easter Egg under the care of Britton while GWIC awaited the result of the ‘B sample’ from the Paws Of Thunder.

Results of that second sample returned positive late last week and the Commission announced on Thursday moves to interim-suspend Britton with immediate effect.

“Following receipt of a certificate of analysis from the Racing Analytical Services, the Commission conducted an investigation into the results of a urine sample taken from the greyhound Wow at the Wentworth Park meeting on 23 January 2021,” a GWIC statement read.

“Further analysis of the sample was conducted by Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory confirming the presence of a permanently banned prohibited substance.

“After considering the evidence currently before the Commission and allowing Ms Britton an opportunity to provide a response, the Commission imposed an interim suspension upon her registration pending the finalisation of the inquiry into this matter.

“The investigation into the presence of the permanently banned prohibited substance is ongoing.

“Wow trained by Ms Britton, currently drawn to race in the Golden Easter Egg on Saturday at Wentworth Park, is still engaged to compete at the meeting on the condition that the greyhound be transferred to a registered participant approved by the Commission no later than 4pm on Thursday.”

Adding further complexity to the situation is GWIC’s new ‘Greyhound Transfer Policy’ which only came into effect earlier this week.

The policy devised by GWIC, GRNSW and the GBOTA, imposes a variety of rules and restrictions in respect to the transfer of greyhounds for people that are under penalty or suspension.