The Australian Turf Club’s Executive General Manager Racing, Matt Rudolph, has been embroiled in the cobalt saga that is sweeping Australian racing, with Racing NSW asking him to show cause as to why he should not be sacked.

An independent investigation has been carried out by the Honourable Keith Mason AC QC which found that Rudolph met with trainers Mark and Sam Kavanagh, both charged separately on cobalt charges, at the Lord Dudley Hotel in Woollahra, Sydney on March 2 this year.

Rudolph will be asked to show cause why his conduct at that meeting was not an attempt to cause Sam Kavanagh to change his evidence before Racing NSW stewards in the Midsummer Suninquiry.

Midsummer Sun returned positive readings to cobalt and caffeine in the urine sample that was taken subsequent to winning the Gosford Gold Cup on January 9.

It will be alleged that Rudolph pressured Kavanagh to withdraw evidence that Dr To m Brennan, Partner in the Flemington Equine Clinic, was the supplier of the 100ml injectable bottle labelled ‘Vitamin Complex’ which was found to contain cobalt.

Rudolph will be asked to show cause as to why the conduct was not:

i. (Breach 1) Dishonest, corrupt, improper and dishonourable conduct, in connection with racing, by making statements to Sam Kavanagh in connection with the stewards’ inquiry that he either knew to be untrue or for which he had no reasonable basis, contrary to AR 175(a); and

ii. An attempt to cause Sam Kavanagh to change his evidence to the stewards in connection with that inquiry; which was:

a. (Breach 2) an attempt to obstruct or hinder the stewards in the exercise of their powers or duties (specifically in the Midsummer Sun inquiry) contrary to AR 175 (l) and (t);

b. (Breach 3) misconduct, improper conduct or unseemly behaviour contrary to AR 175 (q), and

c. (Breach 4) conduct prejudicial to the image, interests and welfare of racing contrary to AR 175A

Racing NSW will conduct the hearing in connection with Rudolph on August 5 at 10am, where he will have the right to be legally represented at that hearing.

The Australian Turf Club released a statement on Tuesday highlighting that integrity is paramount in thoroughbred racing and announcing its support of Racing NSW investigating all allegations, ‘to preserve and enhance the integrity of thoroughbred racing and its standing with the public’.



“The Show Cause Notice centres on discussions between Mr Rudolph, Mr Mark Kavanagh and Mr Sam Kavanagh and Mr Rudolph is not in a position to make any public comment whilst the matter is the subject of a formal hearing,” the statement reads.



“Mr Rudolph has fully co-operated with the inquiries of Racing NSW and intends to keep doing so.



“Mr Rudolph will continue in his role with the ATC until the hearing is determined, at which time the ATC will further review the matter.”

Rudolph is the brother of Racing NSW Deputy Chairman of Stewards - Racing, Greg Rudolph.

A sub-committee of the Board of Racing NSW consisting of Mr Ken Brown AM (who will sit as Chairman), Mr Russell Balding AO and Mr Tony Hodgson AM will hear the matter. An independent senior counsel, Mr Peter Braham SC, has been engaged to conduct the show cause hearing for Racing NSW.

A total of 52 charges have been levelled by Racing NSW stewards after investigations into horses trained by Sam Kavanagh, with the trainer having a total of 24 charges against him.

Brennan was hit with 11 charges and Flemington Equine Clinic practice manager Aaron Corby was issued with two.

Further charges include disqualified former harness trainer Mitchell Butterfield receiving five charges for his alleged involvement, racing identity John Camilleri six and stablehand Michael O'Loughlin four.

The hearing of these charges will resume on July 20.