At least five Florida positives for a widely-used therapeutic tranquilizer have horsemen's groups on edge.
Trainer Cristopher Vienna was fined $1,000 by an administrative law judge for using a Class 2 prohibited drug substance on a horse in 2005. The case stemmed from a positive involving the tranquilizer fluphenazine and the ruling went into effect May 24.
Eclipse Award-winning owner Michael Gill, who sued the New York State Racing and Wagering Board over two positives for a tranquilizer at Saratoga in 2004, has won his case in New York Supreme Court.
Two horses who ran at Saratoga last summer were disqualified from their finishing positions because of positive drug tests, but Mark Shuman, who trained both horses for owner Michael Gill, will not be disciplined in the incident.
Michael Gill, the leading Thoroughbred owner in the country in races and money won, said reported positives for a tranquilizer in two of his horses during the Saratoga meet would result in nothing more than damage to his reputation.
Testing of post race samples for erythropoietin and darbepoietin antibodies will begin Nov. 1 in New York under an emergency rule approved Oct. 21 by the state's Racing and Wagering Board.
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