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A Venezuelan showjumping owner-rider and his long-time American vet have been banned for doping, as the FEI moved to discipline connections of a horse who were found to be complicit.

Fabio Mazzarella, owner of Up Date 2 and Dr William Yerkes — a regular FEI treatment vet — were suspended for 19 months and two years respectively after the horse tested positive for the banned steroid stanozolol at the San Giovanni CSI in Italy in August 2014.

The news came from the FEI yesterday (Tuesday 17 November).

Dr Yerkes admitted administering the steroid-containing product Stargate to treat a liver and kidney problem in May 2014.

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He failed to tell Mr Mazzarella, who later broke his collarbone and passed the ride at San Giovanni to the Argentinian rider, Mariano Ossa.

The FEI Tribunal did not accept that Ossa bore no responsibility, despite being Up Date’s “catch” rider, but reduced his automatic two-year ban by five months after Ossa provided information about Mazzarella and Yerkes.

Meanwhile Indian endurance vet Dr Syed Kamaal will be disciplined in hindsight for a case dating back to February 2012.

He admitting injecting Fustex, known to contain banned substances, to Glenmorgan, the ride of Sheikh Hazza bin Sultan bin Zayed Al Nahyan at Al Wathba CEI in Abu Dhabi. Sheikh Hazza has already served an 18-month suspension.