Sexual ‘predator’ who targeted teenage rider jailed, and more things the horse world is talking about

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  • 1. Sexual ‘predator’ who assaulted teenager jailed

    A “predatory” offender who sexually assaulted a 17-year-old as she was riding her horse alone – and “showed no remorse” for his actions – has been sent to prison. Nathan Thomas McCracken (pictured, top), of Commercial Street, Norton, was sentenced at York Crown Court on Tuesday (7 February). The 29-year-old had pleaded guilty to one charge of sexual assault and two breaches of a sexual harm prevention order imposed for a previous offence. He was jailed for four years and seven months.

    Read more about the sentencing

    2. Who should be at five-star

    Eventing’s leaders debated how to weed out “soft qualifications” as part of ensuring that only the right competitors get to five-stars. The discussion took place at the FEI’s eventing risk management forum in Jardy last month. Standards at CCI5* were scrutinised as the forum – made up of top course-designers, riders, coaches, organisers and officials – looked at who is getting there, how they are qualifying, and what needs to change.

    Discover what else was said during the debate

    3. Trainer fined in ‘mystery’ contamination case

    Trainer Gordon Elliott was fined £1,000 in a ‘mystery’ contamination case involving the horse who finished third in the Champion Hurdle at the 2022 Cheltenham Festival. Zanahiyr tested positive for 3-hydroxylidocaine – a metabolite of lidocaine – in a post-race urine sample at last year’s Festival. It is a prescription-only veterinary medicine, and is also available in over-the-counter products without a prescription for humans. Its use is not banned by the British Horseracing Authority, but it cannot be present in a horse’s system on raceday and has a 72-hour detection time. Neither the BHA nor Mr Elliott could find the source of the contamination. The horse was disqualified and Mr Elliott fined.

    Learn more about the case

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