With a Dec. 1 deadline on racing dates looming, Maryland horsemen are advocating a schedule similar to that of 2010 even though a shutdown of Laurel Park for live racing and training is on the table.
Laboratories that test samples for the presence of drugs in California, Delaware, Kentucky, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and other states have signed letters of intent to submit to accreditation.
For the first time, The Jockey Club will provide live video streaming of the Aug. 22 Round Table Conference on Matters Pertaining to Racing in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
- By Tom LaMarra
As the National Thoroughbred Racing Association prepares for its June 3 board of directors meeting in New York amid a changing landscape, the organization's biggest challenge could very well be industry perception.
Money will go to Dr. Heather DiMaio Knych and Dr. Mary Robinson for post-doctoral research.
- By Ryan Conley
Attorneys arguing about drug testing policies and procedures may differ in their opinions about the applications of such high-profile systems, but they agree that the landscape in which they work has changed.
A controversial model rule that increases losing mount fees for jockeys generated lively debate Dec. 8 when both sides presented their case.
- By Tom LaMarra
The sensitivity of equine drug testing is a big plus for the racing industry, but it also has created confusion. How are the public and media supposed to understand when some industry participants can't make sense of it?
Moving forward with its initiative to significantly change the structure of drug testing in U.S. horse racing, the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC) board of directors has approved the formation of a committee to oversee the implementation of the Drug Testing Initiative (DTI) Task Force recommendations on quality assurance and laboratory accreditation programs for U.S. horse racing drug testing laboratories.
A seminar focused on drug testing and the prosecution of a medication case will be the focus of the Racing Officials Accreditation Programfs second annual Officiating Horse Racing Conference at the University of Arizona Race Track Industry Programfs Symposium on Racing and Gaming.
- By Tom LaMarra
The Association of Racing Commissioners International is looking at extending the cutoff time for use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in racehorses beyond 24 hours prior to a race, but horsemen's groups claim the action is premature.
A Maryland harness track July 15 was denied a temporary restraining order to force TrackNet Media Group and 15 other racetracks to provide it with Thoroughbred signals.
Chances are many more officials in the horse racing industry support uniform regulations a lot more than they support uniform penalties -- at least beyond a literal interpretation.
With revenue from slot machines probably a few years away, Thoroughbred racing in Maryland will continue in no-frills mode for the immediate future.
Following the Oct. 15 unveiling of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association's Safety and Integrity Alliance, four of the organization's principle figures were on hand to further explain their roles and the details of the equine health and safety reform plan, which will be implemented gradually over the next two years.
The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium is developing a five-prong plan to implement equine drug-testing standards similar to those used by the World Anti-Doping Agency.
The horseracing industry will continue with a serious push to enact reforms related to equine safety and drug testing, officials indicated Aug. 17 during and after The Jockey Club Round Table in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
Racing medications and the future of the New York Racing Association were among the topics discussed Aug. 5 at the eighth Institute on Racing and Gaming Law in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.
Following a three-hour hearing that resulted in the reduction of Eclipse Award-winning jockey Jeremy Rose's suspension from six months to 90 days, attorney Alan Foreman and Bernard Daney, chairman of the Delaware Thoroughbred Racing Commission, reflected on the outcome.
Churchill Downs Inc. said May 15 it reached an agreement with Maryland horsemen that will permit Calder Race Course to take Pimlico Race Course's signal May 16-17, including the Preakness Stakes (gr. I).
The Maryland racing industry is throwing its support behind a campaign for slot machines, but it remains to be seen whether any racetracks would get the gambling devices should the public approve a statewide ballot measure in November.
The Maryland Racing Commission remains committed to regulating anabolic steroids in racehorses, but will delay implementation of a model rule given questions about the rule itself and laboratory testing procedures.
The head of a major horsemen's group in the United States has proposed a national approach for regulation of anabolic steroids in racehorses with an implementation date of Jan. 1, 2009.
Eight horsemen?s groups from around the United States have joined together to form a coalition designed to improve racing economics, specifically in the area of generating more purse revenue from interstate simulcasts.
Maryland racing interests are optimistic over passage of legislation to authorize a statewide referendum on slot machines in November 2008, but they indicated there remains a need for financial relief before the slots measure even comes up for a vote.
Regulations ultimately resulting in a race-day ban on anabolic steroids most likely will be in place in many states in the Mid-Atlantic region by April 1, 2008.
The New York Racing Association will again raises purses, this time for the 45-day Aqueduct fall meet that begins Oct. 24 and runs through Dec. 30. Projected purses will be the highest in recent memory for the fall meet.
Though questions persist about TrackNet Media Group, the entity formed by Churchill Downs Inc. and Magna Entertainment Corp. to buy and sell simulcast signals, it has generated an initial positive response from one of the country's major horsemen's groups.
Maryland lawmakers again addressed the issue of racetrack slot machines in committee March 6, but passage of legislation is hardly assured.
Representatives of horsemen's groups criticized for not supporting the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund questioned jockeys' support for the fund and said pursuit of legislation that would amend the Interstate Horseracing Act has damaged relations between horsemen and jockeys.
Members of the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium are expected to recommend regulation of anabolic steroids in racehorses, but the timetable for the regulations remains up in the air.
They may not agree on how to get there, but industry representatives expressed willingness Oct. 17 to examine the jockey insurance issue and work together on solutions.
The NTRA Charities Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund announced it has disbursed $56,121 to more than 50 former riders who are permanently disabled as a result of injuries sustained while riding at North American racetracks.
D.G. Van Clief Jr., president of Breeders' Cup since 1996 and commissioner of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association since late summer of 2004, will retire from both positions by the end of this year.
Principals in the Maryland horse racing and breeding industry have struck a major agreement on issues that have stymied progress in the state and led lawmakers and regulators to often claim the industry is in disarray.
Industry officials have expressed some discomfort with a lawmaker's plan to introduce legislation that would amend the Interstate Horseracing Act of 1978 to provide funds for workers' compensation insurance for jockeys.
Maryland Jockey Club president Joe De Francis presented a new proposal to horsemen and breeders the week of Dec. 12 and said he believes the three sides are near a deal for 2006 racing dates. Horsemen and breeders, however, said it's not a done deal.
It appears another Maryland Racing Commission meeting will come and go Tuesday without an agreement between Magna Entertainment Corp, horsemen and breeders on a plan for the 2006 racing season in the state.
The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium expects to have enough money to carry it through 2006, but an official with the group indicated it's imperative more racetrack and horsemen's associations commit funds to the organization.
The Board of Directors of the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC) commissioned Dr. Rick Sams of Ohio State to develop an action plan, timeline, and research priorities to establish guidelines for withdrawal times for therapeutic medications commonly used by racetrack veterinarians.
Racing officials have expressed little hope a conflict between regulators and horsemen can be resolved in time to salvage the plan for Monmouth Park to become the first New Jersey racetrack to host a Breeders' Cup.
Regulators in the Mid-Atlantic region, who have been working together for years on uniform medication rules, agreed Jan. 20 to endorse the model medication and drug testing policy devised by the national Racing Medication and Testing Consortium.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association working group on insurance, members of which were named Nov. 16, will hold its first meeting Nov. 22.
Though regulators on Dec. 10 will examine a proposal for a national medication and drug-testing policy, release of the document to the public hinges on how well it is received during the meeting.
The first indication a deal might be worked out to keep Pimlico's stable open for the winter emerged Tuesday. Meetings took place between horsemen's leadership and track management in a Baltimore office and between horsemen's leadership and angry Pimlico backstretch workers in the Pimlico track kitchen.
In the continuing dispute over the Maryland Jockey Club's closing of the Pimlico stables for the winter, the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association has voted to try to stop the MJC from simulcasting out-of-state races.
After years of dipping into purse accounts to meet expenses, the New York Racing Association has, under pressure from horsemen, opened a new account that will be solely for maintaining purse winnings.
The Maryland Racing Commission voted Tuesday not to intervene in the Maryland Jockey Club's decision to close the Pimlico stables for the winter. The 6-2 vote set off a flurry of angry responses from horsemen aimed primarily at Tom McDonough, commission chairman.
- By Ray Paulick
By Ray Paulick -- As a move toward uniform drug rules progresses, it's obvious that no policy will please everyone.
Mid-Atlantic regulators and the Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association are scheduled to meet June 12 in New Jersey to discuss medication and drug-testing issues on a regional and national scope.
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