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Horse Racing: Lord preserve us from the foxes.

Byline: JOE PUNTER

THE House of Lords is an anchronism that could only exist in this sceptered isle. Unelected, unrepresentative and seemingly unable to resist greasing their palms when the peers are stretching them out to big business.

Now I am not suggesting that Lord Donoughue is on the gravy train but if his current dual role is not a conflict of interests then I am Brad Pitt.

The good lord is head of the Starting Price Regulatory Commission - the body that oversees the System - as well as being a consultant to Paddy Power on "matters relating to horseracing."

It's an extraordinary situation, like posting a fox as a protector in the hen run. And no matter how much Donoughue protests his impartiality he's skating on the thinnest of ice.

There have already been ructions over how new propsed new SP reforms will weigh heavily in the bookies' favour so to have someone acting as a bridge between the sport and the big layers who has such a vested interest in the "enemy" camp beggars belief.

TALKING of foxes and hen runs, no surprise to see Barney Curley do a bigger U-turn than St Paul on the road to Damascus by announcing his return to the training ranks.

No surprise either that his rethink comes days after his assistant Andrew Stringer landed a touch when Tusculum was bet from 6-1 all the way down to 8-11 at Kempton and duly obliged.

GOT a racing query? Write to Joe Punter, Sports Desk, Sunday Mail, One Central Quay, Glasgow G3 8DA or email joepunter@sundaymailsport.co.uk

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Donoughue: Time to get his skates on
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Feb 15, 2009
Words:274
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