Testing of Clifton Promise’s B sample delayed

  • The B sample from Jock Paget’s Burghley winner Clifton Promise will now not be tested until mid-November, Equestrian Sports New Zealand (ESNZ) has announced.

    It emerged last month that Clifton Promise had tested positive for banned substance reserpine at Burghley Horse Trials (5-8 September). The FEI will now test the B sample to determine if the first result was correct.

    Reserpine is a powerful human tranquilizer, which is on the FEI banned substance list. When the results of the first sample were announced Jock said he was “absolutely dumbfounded” by the discovery.

    Initially a result was expected from the second B sample within 3 weeks — today’s date — but ESNZ has issued a statement saying that the analysis is not expected to happen for another couple of weeks.

    The statement from ESNZ added: “This timescale is a normal part of the legal process currently underway.”

    Clifton Pinot, ridden by Jock’s mentor, Australian eventer Kevin McNab, also tested positive for the same substance at Burghley. Frances Stead of Clifton Eventers — the principal owner of both horses — has repeatedly expressed her faith in Jock and Kevin.

    The Australian federation has not yet announced when Clifton Pinot’s B test will be analysed.

    Both of the riders are currently suspended from competition pending the results of the B sample.

    If the B sample comes back positive Jock will automatically lose his Burghley title and face an FEI tribunal to determine the length of his ban, which could be up to 2 years.

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