The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium believes the majority of racing jurisdictions will have a substantial portion of the National Uniform Medication Program in place by year's end.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association board of directors July 14 signed off on recommended changes to a proposed model rule on medication penalties but acknowledged acceptance could be hard to achieve.
Racing jurisdictions and racetracks are making some headway on tightening the screws on integrity in the sport, though one official Dec. 6 described it as a "minefield" due to legal issues and court fights.
The West Virginia Racing Commission voted April 13 to ban the use of adjunct bleeder medications on race day and to adopt much stricter penalties for drug violations.
Beginning Oct. 10, jockeys in Great Britain will face a minimum suspension of five days for not adhering to stricter limits for use of the whip in races.
The National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association said July 24 it supports elimination of race-day medication use with the exception of the anti-bleeding drug Salix.
The Association of Racing Commissioners International board of directors July 27 will consider a committee recommendation to categorize three designer drugs a Class 1--the most serious in racehorses.
The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, operating on a tight schedule, approved a regulation Sept. 7 governing out-of-competition equine drug testing with plans to have it in place in advance of the Nov. 5-6 Breeders' Cup.
Breeders' Cup has added to its medication and testing policy and increased penalties for violators for 2009.
Ohio is among the weakest when it comes to Thoroughbred purses, but it's about to have the strongest rules governing registration of state-bred horses.
- By Tom LaMarra
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.
Medication violations in California will be subject to stricter penalties under guidelines approved by the state's racing board.
The California Horse Racing Board Medication Committee will consider major changes to the state's medication rules and penalties during a meeting Jan. 9 at Santa Anita Park.
- By Tom LaMarra
Out-of-competition testing of racehorses can be problematic, but some jurisdictions are making headway to combat use of performance-enhancing substances that aren't administered on race day.
- By Ron Mitchell
A 90-day emergency regulation governing infractions of Kentucky equine medication rules expired Feb. 15 and the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority reverted back to the old rules that were previously in place.
The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium board of directors met June 28 in Chicago, approving several measures including final recommendations for penalties.
The Kentucky Horse Racing Authority delayed action May 16 on a hard-hitting, comprehensive schedule of penalties for medication violations--including ones designed to make racehorse owners and veterinarians more accountable.
- By Tom LaMarra
A hard-hitting, comprehensive schedule of penalties for medication violations--including ones designed to make racehorse owners more accountable--is headed to the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority for consideration at its May 16 meeting.
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