Churchill Downs Inc. on July 31 became the 24th racetrack entity in the United States to commit to making a contribution to the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium.
This commitment is part of the RMTC's annual track fundraising campaign, in which it hopes to raise at least $200,000 in contributions from tracks across the country. CDI president Bill Carstanjen linked CDI's contribution to the RMTC's continuing efforts in drug research and equine advocacy.
"This support is part of our ongoing efforts to make meaningful contributions that will improve the state of horse racing in America," Carstanjen said. "RMTC is a positive and strong voice in our industry and CDI shares their goal of helping to ensure the health and welfare of racehorses and participants."
CDI joins other multi-track owners New York Racing Association, The Stronach Group, and Global Gaming in committing to help fund the RMTC in 2014.
"We are thrilled with CDI's decision to support the RMTC's efforts," said RMTC chairman Alex Waldrop. "The RMTC's work developing a science-based medication policy, achieving advancements in drug testing and tactical research, implementing a strong penalty system, and establishing a laboratory accreditation program would not be possible without the generosity of industry leaders like CDI."
RMTC executive director Dionne Benson hopes to see an increase in track support from last year, in which 28 racing associations across North America contributed nearly $170,000.
"In order for the RMTC to continue to pursue the costly scientific research necessary to confront on-going and emerging threats to the integrity of our sport, it is vital that we see growth in support from tracks of all racing breeds," said Benson. "We urge other tracks to follow CDI's lead by financially supporting the RMTC."