Butler landed with three-month ban

Butler landed with three-month ban

John Butler gave the leg up on his last runner for three months at Newcastle on Wednesday after the trainer was suspended last week.

The Newmarket-based trainer was handed a three-month suspension after he was found guilty of misleading officials in relation to an injury that a horse had sustained in Butler’s care by the BHA disciplinary panel. He was also fined £1000 for having incomplete medical records.

Butler was found guilty of “deliberately misleading BHA investigating officers” with regards to the withdrawal of his colt, National Anthem in a six-furlong novice race at Redcar in October 2017.

The controversial trainer has saddled 32 winners in this flat season, claiming more than £200,000 in prize money.

The latest of his wins came in a class six, six-furlong contest at Wolverhampton, where Butler-trained, Pushkin Museum (5/2F) won on November 24.

The most damning finding by the BHA disciplinary panel was that the lies that Butler told were “premeditated” and also were “continually repeated and emphasised, and their motive, as eventually admitted by Butler, was to stop any further investigation into why he had endeavoured to run an injured and unfit horse in a race at Redcar.”

The vet in the paddock at the Yorkshire track noticed that National Anthem was lame on his right-front leg and had a “massive swelling” to his front-left leg.

The vet advised Butler that the horse shouldn’t run, the day before the scheduled novice race at Redcar, but the trainer’s own vet, Stuart Williamson backed his boss, describing Butler as “very responsible”.

Butler’s final runner before the three-month suspension was Amherst Rock (6/1), who finished sixth behind False ID (3/1F) at Newcastle on Wednesday evening.