Aidan O'Brien and sons forced to withdraw all Longchamp runners on Sunday

POSTED ON  |  12-10-2020

Aidan O'Brien and sons
Sunday's Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe card at Longchamp will be hit with a spate of high-profile withdrawals after Aidan O'Brien revealed that all of his and his sons Joseph and Donnacha's runners would be withdrawn from all meetings after urine samples that were sent to a French lab returned positive for the prohibited substance Zilpaterol.

The sensational move comes after it emerged on Friday night that Gain Equine Nutrition had advised its customers to stop using their feed products after batches had become contaminated with Zilpaterol, which is unlicensed in Europe but is used in the US and elsewhere to promote weight gain, mainly in cattle.  The advisory came about after France Galop announced that five horses had tested positive for Zilpaterol in recent weeks.

Initial urine samples that O'Brien sent to the Irish Equine Centre had returned negative, but the samples sent to the French lab returned positive. As a result of the positive findings, it means that all of the O'Brien runners, including Mogul, Japan, Sovereign and Serpentine, who were due to take on Enable in an historic Arc, will not take part. "The results from the urine samples we sent to the Irish Equine Centre were clear but they returned positive from the French lab," O'Brien told the Racing Post on Saturday night.

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