BHA will consider concerns over CCTV security weaknesses at Kempton Park

POSTED ON  |  20-07-2019

CCTV Wireless
The British Horseracing Authority said on Thursday that it will “consider” concerns raised by its independent disciplinary panel after it highlighted the fact that CCTV cameras at Kempton Park, one of Britain’s busiest tracks in terms of runners, do not cover every box in the “secure area” of its stables. The lack of full CCTV coverage at Kempton was an issue for the panel during its hearing into a positive drug test for atenolol, a beta-blocker, returned by Marco Botti’s Crowned Eagle after a race at Kempton on 31 March 2018. The panel imposed no penalty on Botti at a hearing on 27 June this year, having decided that the trainer had taken “all reasonable precautions to avoid a violation of the anti-doping rules”.

When the panel’s written reasons for its finding were published on Thursday, it made plain its concerns that evidence from the racecourse, where Crowned Eagle had been left unattended for several hours prior to his race, was extremely limited. It pointed out that while Tim Miller, the BHA’s investigating officer, provided a statement which “contained at least 24 paragraphs about enquiries at Mr Botti’s stables and questioning of his staff”, there were just “two paragraphs concerning enquiries relating to Kempton”, primarily because CCTV footage was “of no assistance as apparently the positioning of the cameras was such that they did not cover box 20 in which Crowned Eagle was stabled”.

The panel added: “This feature of the security system at Kempton was not explained by anyone from the racecourse executive and nor were we informed about the number of boxes which were not subject to CCTV surveillance.” There is no suggestion Kempton failed to fulfil its obligations, but punters may be surprised that the BHA does not require full CCTV coverage of secure areas in the track’s licence.

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