Australian trainer Darren Weir is expected to be handed a lengthy ban after Racing Victoria stewards concluded their hearing into the show cause notices issued against him.
While Weir did not contest the charges, principally that he was found in possession of electronic apparatus capable of affecting the performance of a horse, fellow trainer Jarrod McLean will fight a similar case.
The RV stewards are seeking a disqualification of four years for Weir, who won the 2015 Melbourne Cup with Prince Of Penzance.
Racing Victoria’s executive general manager – integrity, Jamie Stier said: “This is a complex matter, and the stewards were determined to be thorough and give due consideration to the submissions made, their legal advice and the ongoing investigations.
“Darren Weir is facing serious charges of possessing three electrical apparatus and conduct prejudicial to the interests or image of racing. He has advised the stewards that he will not contest those charges, which have drawn considerable negative publicity to the sport.
“To that end, stewards have requested that the RAD (Racing Appeals and Disciplinary) board expedite the hearing of Mr Weir’s charges – at which point they will be seeking a four-year disqualification.
“Until such time as the RAD board convenes to hear and determine Mr Weir’s charges, the stewards have imposed strict conditions on his licence that ensure he is not permitted to enter or race any horses as a trainer or owner.
“On the basis that Mr McLean advised the stewards he will contest the charges against him, significant conditions have also been imposed on his operation until such time as the charges have been heard and determined by the RAD board.
“In reaching these positions on the show cause notices, the stewards note that investigations remain ongoing and that they reserve the right to act upon any new evidence that comes to hand during the course of those investigations.”