Irish regulatory board to hear Stephen Mahon appeal over four-year ban

Mahon received longest licence suspension ever for trainer in Ireland last month

Stephen Mahon’s appeal against a four year suspension for breaching rules in relation to animal welfare takes place on Saturday morning in the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board’s HQ at the Curragh.

Mahon received the longest licence suspension ever handed out to a trainer in Ireland last month.

That was on the back of rule breaches relating to the neglect and proper supervision of 10 racehorses at his Co. Galway base following inspections by IHRB and Department of Agriculture officials in April.

At last month’s hearing into the case it was heard that one animal had to be put down due to being “catastrophically injured” in a fetlock joint. Another was found to be “emaciated.”


The hearing panel decided there were “multiple and widespread failures to secure the welfare of animals” in Mahon’s charge.

The trainer’s appeal is due to begin at 10.30 on Saturday. It is unclear if a decision will be reached on the day or if any judgment will be deferred.

Mahon is allowed continue to work in racing while his licence is suspended and is currently under investigation by the IHRB after an incident at Tipperary earlier this month when an enquiry was held into his behaviour.

In his new role as authorised representative and travelling head lad to fellow Galway trainer Pat Kelly, he was alleged to have interfered in the post-race sampling of a horse he used to train, Stormey.

An IHRB veterinary assistant reported how Mahon “was interfering in the sampling process by insisting that she turn the tumbler used to collect the urine sample upside down to prove that there was nothing in it, prior to the sample being taken.”

The official added that Mahon was reluctant to leave the sampling unit and observe the process on the screen situated out the testing unit.

Brian O'Connor

Brian O'Connor

Brian O'Connor is the racing correspondent of The Irish Times. He also writes the Tipping Point column