The eventing community continues to reel after yesterday’s news that this year’s Badminton and Burghley winner Clifton Promise tested positive for Reserpine, a heavy tranquilizer on the FEI Prohibited Substance List. Jock Paget now faces a two-month suspension from all national and international competitions while we await the results of the B sample. All reports coming from Jock’s team indicate they’re absolutely shocked by the news, and Frances Stead, who owns Clifton Promise, took to the air waves today to reiterate her total support for Jock in a radio interview:
“To be honest, if you think about the scenario, you have a horse that went around probably the toughest cross-country course in the world and went around very fast. The last thing you would do to try to enhance its performance is give it a sedative before it came out tired the next day to try to clear all the show jumps. The scenario just doesn’t make sense. I don’t understand it. Jock doesn’t understand it. We’re all shocked by it.
“With Jock, I don’t think you could find a more ethical or honest person who always operates with absolute integrity. There is absolutely no way Jock did anything knowingly in this process.”
Click below to listen to the full interview, which begins with Andrew Nicholson weighing in on the controversy.