FEI Tribunal vindicates both riders with "No Fault or Negligence" decisions
With regard to the positive tests for a banned substance found in our two horses Clifton Promise and Clifton Pinot at the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials in September 2013, we are delighted to announce that the FEI Tribunal has ruled that there was "No Fault or Negligence" by anyone associated with either horse (see FEI Equine Anti-Doping Decisions). As a result, the provisional suspension that had been imposed by the FEI on both riders, Jock Paget and Kevin McNab, has now been permanently lifted.
This outcome confirms what we have consistently said since this news broke on 16th October last year – that both Jock and Kevin are two exceptional individuals who are not only very talented and hardworking, but also operate at all times in an ethical and honest way and for whom the welfare of their horses is absolutely paramount.
It is also great news for the sport of eventing, as it confirms it remains clean of any drug abuse of horses.
To help clarify the situation for everyone, below is a summary of the key facts, as we understand them, of the FEI Tribunal's decisions regarding Clifton Promise and Clifton Pinot, which extend to 36 and 33 pages respectively:
In summary, this situation of a positive FEI test for the prohibited substance Reserpine for both Clifton Promise and Clifton Pinot at Burghley 2013:
This rare "No Fault or Negligence" ruling by the FEI Tribunal totally vindicates Jock Paget and Kevin McNab, along with Clifton Eventers and anyone else involved with these horses, from any wrong doing. The great cloud that has been over everyone's heads for almost a year now has finally been lifted.
Jock Paget and Clifton Promise were the first rider/horse combination for 24 years to win both Badminton and Burghley in the same year in 2013. It is extremely sad that, as a result of this matter and how long it has taken to be resolved, they could not go on to try and be the first horse/ rider combination to ever win the 'Grand Slam' at Kentucky in 2014. (The only rider to previously win the Grand Slam, Pippa Funnell, did so using more than one horse).
In addition, the length of time this has taken has meant Kevin McNab could not prepare Clifton Pinot properly to try and meet Australia's selection criteria for WEG 2014 and has missed the opportunity of representing his country for the first time at a major championships.
However, now at least we can all focus on the future. Kevin and Clifton Pinot are aiming to shine at Burghley. Before that, however, Jock and Clifton Promise will try and show the world what a great combination they are by aiming to win Gold at WEG 2014 in three weeks' time.
Please support Jock and Kevin and wish them well, as after all that they have been through over the past year, there are certainly none more deserving of success than these two exceptional individuals.
For over 15 years Clifton Eventers has worked to build the reputation of the Clifton name, in the process supporting over a dozen young up-and-coming riders with quality horses and selling over 120 eventers with the Clifton prefix to riders around the world, including Olympic gold medallist David O'Connor.
Clifton horses have represented New Zealand on the world stage since 2001 – including Clifton Promise at the 2010 World Equestrian Games at Kentucky where he finished seventh out of 80 starters and again at the 2012 Olympic Games in London where he was part of New Zealand's Bronze medal winning team.
Indeed, Clifton Promise was the third-ranked eventing horse in the world in 2012, amassing 296 FEI points from just three FEI competitions.
|No Upcoming Event|
06 June, 2014
Equestrian Sports New Zealand has just issued the following statement, reproduced in full below.
New Zealand eventer Jock Paget is temporarily clear to return to the competitive arena after the FEI Tribunal this morning lifted his provisional suspension pending the release of their full ruling.
27 November, 2013
Equestrian Sports New Zealand has just issued the following statement, reproduced in full below. As stated previously, Clifton Eventers will not be making any separate statement other than to emphasise once again that all the relevant parties state categorically that none of them have taken any actions with the intent of administering any prohibited substance. We would also reiterate that Clifton Eventers are firm supporters of all policies that prevent the use of any substances that enhance the performance of any horse. We all want a clean sport and a level playing field for competition. It is the only fair way for the best combination to become the winners on the day.
27 October, 2013
Last week we started the first of what we thought would be a series of weekly updates on the matter of the positive 'A' sample findings for Clifton Promise and Clifton Pinot from the Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials, and the indefinite suspension of their respective riders, Jock Paget and Kevin McNab.
Given the likelihood that these findings will lead to an FEI Tribunal hearing where they intend to prove their innocence, both riders have now engaged lawyers experienced in FEI cases.
The lawyers have advised, given the preparation for such cases is a long complex process, we should cease making such informative updates to the public. This is contrary to our own normal policy of open and frank communication on all topics, but we do fully accept we have no prior experience at all of such FEI cases. Therefore, we will no longer be posting weekly updates from Clifton Eventers. We apologise for any disappointment, but I am sure everyone can understand that this is a very trying time when we all want to follow the advice of those who have been in this situation before.
Monday 6 May 2013 — 2013 Title Winner: Mitsubishi Motors Badminton International Horse Trials CCI4*: Jonathan 'Jock' Paget on Frances Stead's 16.3hh Bay NZTB Gelding Clifton Promise 2013. Credit: Libby Law – Copyright: Libby Law Photography – NZL