Gordon Elliott faces inquiry after Cheltenham Champion Hurdle third tests positive

Zanahiyr tested positive for banned substance after last year’s race

Zanahiyr, who faces disqualification from third place in last season's Champion Hurdle after testing positive for a prohibited substance. Photograph: PA Wire

Gordon Elliott will face an independent disciplinary hearing on Wednesday after Zanahiyr tested positive for a banned substance following his third-placed finish in the Champion Hurdle at Cheltenham last year.

Elliott’s runner, owned by the Bective Stud, tested positive post-race for 3-hydroxylidocaine after the premier hurdling race of the season and if found guilty could face disqualification by the independent panel at the British Horseracing Authority.

Ridden by Jack Kennedy, the pair were beaten four and a lengths by Honeysuckle, with Epatante in second. In fourth place and set to benefit from any disqualification was the Willie Mullins-trained Saint Roi, like Epatante owned by JP McManus.

The substance in question, which is a metabolite of Lidocaine, is often used in racing stables as a local anaesthetic.


In 2016, Derby-winning trainer Dermot Weld was fined by the Irish Turf Club after one of his horses failed a test for the same substance. – Guardian