SINN Féin senator Paul Gavan has called for an independent investigation into the Irish Horseracing Regulatory Board [IHRB] in the wake of two features in the Sunday Independent which called into question the IHRB’s handling of recent cases.

Referring to the two newspaper articles, Senator Gavan said: “The key suggestion in Mr Paul Kimmage’s article is that the IHRB sought to discredit the trainer, Mr Stephen Mahon, because of his prior claim as a whistleblower regarding the use of performance enhancing drugs in horseracing.

“After reading Mr. Kimmage’s articles, I believe there are serious questions to be asked about the regulatory board because if any of this is proven to have some truth, there will be serious questions about the treatment of Mr Mahon and his family. I have to ask the question: who is going to regulate the regulator?”

Mahon is currently serving a three-and-a-half-year suspension for breaches of animal welfare rules.