The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium is developing protocol designed to streamline and improve equine drug-testing in the United States. And it is taking a few pages from a 1991 study that didn't gain any traction in the racing industry when it was released.
Year-and-a-half-old testing for anabolic steroids in racehorses produced some unusual results -- including the discovery of a Standardbred filly that's actually a male.
Though most racing jurisdictions in North America have greatly curtailed the use of race-day medication, two drugs commonly used in racehorses are getting a hard look from industry officials.
On April 6, two days after Gato Go Win was scratched from the Bay Shore Stakes (gr.III) at Aqueduct because the horse's trainer, Jeff Mullins, was observed administrating an orally-injected substance to his horse in the detention barn, the New York State Racing and Wagering Board said the "matter is still in the hands" of the Aqueduct stewards.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association has circulated a list of more than 15 compliance standards that could be finalized in early March and serve as the basis for accreditation in the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance.
The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium board of directors Feb. 6 received an update on an anabolic steroids study, results of which will be used to set thresholds for testing in plasma.
The Jockey Club Thoroughbred Safety Committee said Feb. 11 it will fund a Racing Medication and Testing Consortium frozen-sample and retrospective testing program that will begin in April.
The University of Florida Racing Laboratory has been selected to handle equine drug testing for Kentucky.
Jayne Vaders, the leading trainer at Philadelphia Park Casino & Racetrack in 2007, lost her appeal Jan. 9 in Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania for an indefinite ban from training due to multiple drug positives.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association will discuss aftercare for racehorses, equine medication and drug-testing thresholds, and synthetic surfaces during its winter convention Jan. 30-Feb. 2 in Hollywood, Fla.
New York racing regulators have approved a final set of rules restricting the use of anabolic steroids in horse racing, effective Jan. 1, 2009.
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.
The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium recently prepared a list of 2009-10 goals, one of which is tackling use of corticosteroids in racehorses.
The Todd Pletcher-trained Wait a While, champion 3-year-old filly of 2006, tested positive for procaine in the $2-million Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) at Santa Anita Park, it was confirmed Dec. 5 by the California Horse Racing Board. Procaine is a local anesthetic found in the antibiotic procaine penicillin G.
Using emergency regulations, the Louisiana Racing Commission has banned the use of anabolic steroids in racehorses effective Jan. 1, 2009.
The Sales Integrity Program managed by the Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association released data compiling the number of exogenous anabolic steroid tests and ownership registry submissions for the Fasig-Tipton, Keeneland, and Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. summer and fall yearling sales.
Legislation that would require racetracks to submit detailed daily reports on pari-mutuel handle and attendance, and various parties to submit racehorse injury reports, has been pre-filed for the 2009 session of the Kentucky General Assembly.
The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission postponed taking action Oct. 27 on trainer Rick Dutrow Jr.'s suspension and sent his case back to a hearing officer to gather more information.
A week after announcing a major safety and integrity initiative for horse racing, the National Thoroughbred Racing Association board of directors said it has launched a national search for an executive director to spearhead the endeavor.
A hearing officer has recommended the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission overturn a 15-day suspension given trainer Rick Dutrow for a positive clenbuterol test, but the commission has indicated it will challenge the finding.
Regulation of anabolic steroids will be in effect Jan. 1, 2009, in Ohio.
The California Horse Racing Board announced Oct. 7 that in conjunction with Breeders' Cup, it will be conducting random out-of-competition testing for horses pre-entered in the World Championships.
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.
Northern California trainer Steven Miyadi has drawn a sixth complaint from the California Horse Racing Board for alleged violations of new rules regarding the use of the synthetic anabolic steroid stanozolol that became official after Aug. 1.
The Governor's Task Force on the Future of Horse Racing hopes to have the framework for a plan to create an equine drug-testing laboratory in Kentucky in place by the end of this year.
Gov. Steve Beshear has made new appointments to the Kentucky Equine Drug Research Council, which advises the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission on equine drug-testing and research.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association hopes to have a long-term implementation plan for uniform equine health and safety measures in place within 30 days.
William S. Farish Jr. was unanimously re-elected as Breeders' Cup chairman, and R.D. Hubbard selected as vice chairman, during the third-quarter meeting of the Breeders' Cup board of directors Sept. 5.
The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission voted unanimously Aug. 25 to ban the use of anabolic steroids in racehorses, and the rules could be in place the first week of September should Gov. Steve Beshear sign an emergency regulation as expected.
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.
The Kentucky Equine Drug Research Council has adopted a recommended ban on anabolic steroids that is classified as the "toughest in the country" by the panel's chairman.
Illinois Congressman Bobby Rush, chairman of the congressional subcommittee that held a June 19 hearing on the Thoroughbred racing industry, has questioned the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission's decision to suspend trainer Rick Dutrow only 15 days for a clenbuterol positive.
A July 18 forum on equine welfare and safety gave participants a chance to offer a perspective not provided during a June congressional hearing at which the horseracing industry was slammed, horsemen said.
A subcommittee of the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has unanimously recommended that anabolic steroids be banned in horse racing in the state.
The 2008 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July yearling sale marked the first sale in which the auction company offered buyers the opportunity to have their horses tested for exogenous anabolic steroids.
Penn National Gaming Inc., second only to Magna Entertainment Corp. in terms of number of racetrack holdings in North America, said July 15 it has developed equine health and safety initiatives it hopes implement at all of its properties in six jurisdictions.
Kentucky racing officials said they intend on having regulations for use of anabolic steroids in racehorses in place as quickly as possible, but discussion and research are still needed.
Bruce Levine, the leading trainer at Monmouth Park, had his entire stable of 41 horses tested for erythropoietin, commonly known as EPO, by a New Jersey state veterinarian who made a surprise visit to Levine's Monmouth barn June 24 at the request of the New Jersey Racing Commission.
Trainer Steve Asmussen was notified June 26 that a horse in his care tested positive for the Class 2 substance lidocaine following a May 10 maiden special weight race at Lone Star Park, and his lawyer said Asmussen would fight the charge.
A horse trained by Rick Dutrow tested positive for twice the allowable level of the bronchodilator clenbuterol.
The California Horse Racing Board will vote in July on regulatory changes that would result in stricter penalties for anabolic steroids violations, and is soliciting public comment prior to a July 17 hearing at Del Mar.
The New York Senate approved a bill June 23 that would establish a testing program for steroids in racehorses via horsemen's contributions.
IEAH Stables has taken the first bold step in securing a no-drug policy in racing by announcing Monday that all its horses starting Oct. 1 will race without any medication, with the exception of Lasix, which trainer Rick Dutrow asked that they exclude because several of his horses are bleeders and require Lasix to race.
The United States House Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection has scheduled a hearing -- "Breeding, Drugs, and Breakdowns: The State of Thoroughbred Horseracing and the Welfare of the Thoroughbred Racehorse" -- for June 19 in Washington, D.C.
A congressional subcommittee could schedule a hearing as early as June to examine breakdowns, medication use, and breeding practices in Thoroughbreds.
A congressional subcommittee has demanded information from state racing commissions about racehorse breakdowns, drug use, and breeding.
The complicated nature of regulating anabolic steroids in racehorses came to light May 20 when discussion among members of the Kentucky Equine Drug Research Council and others seemed to indicate the easiest route is an all-out ban on the substances.
The National Thoroughbred Racing Association is prepared for "every potential outcome" on Preakness Stakes (gr. I) day, but no matter the result, developments in the area of equine health and welfare in the coming weeks and months are of the utmost importance, the organization's president and chief executive officer said.
The Indiana Horse Racing Commission voted May 12 to extend the grace period for anabolic steroid positives at Hoosier Park and Indiana Downs to 90 days.
A Commonwealth Court in Pennsylvania has granted Jayne Vaders, last year's leading trainer at Philadelphia Park Casino & Racetrack, a stay of her indefinite license revocation, which was handed down by the Pennsylvania Horse Racing Commission last May.
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