A debate over whether the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority has the power to fine violators of the state's new equine medication regulations has led the authority to seek clarification from the state legislature.
New York regulators have altered the state's equine medication rules to bring them more in compliance with other states, but they have refused to join states that permit administration of more race-day drugs.
Kentucky's new medication rules were approved Dec. 13 by the state General Assembly Administrative Regulation Review Subcommittee.
Turfway Park, which opens Wednesday night and has been light on entries thus far because of a reluctance by some trainers to enter horses because of changes in race-day medication regulations, is keeping the entry box for Thursday night's program open through Wednesday morning.
More than 3 1/2 inches of rain had absolutely no impact on the new Polytrack at Turfway Park, which opens the evening of Sept. 7, but the impending change in race-day medication regulations for Thoroughbred racing in Kentucky is said to have put a dent in the opening-night entry box.
A judge has denied a request by the Kentucky Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association for a temporary injunction to delay implementation of a new equine medication policy in Kentucky, but he made an exception for veterinarians.
The Kentucky Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association could file a lawsuit to prevent implementation of a new race-day medication policy in the state.
Kentucky Gov. Ernie Fletcher signed emergency regulations Aug. 19 that will limit race-day equine medication on race day effective Sept. 7. The Kentucky Horse Racing Authority approved the regulations only four days earlier.
The Thoroughbred medication policy approved by the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority Aug. 15 was previously modified to allow for up to two adjunct bleeder medications instead of one on race day.
The Kentucky Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association has asked Gov. Ernie Fletcher to authorize a "full review" before any changes are made to the state's equine race-day medication policy.
The Kentucky Equine Drug Research Council set in motion major changes in the state's medication and drug-testing policies when it voted Feb. 4 to recommend adoption of the model rules devised by the national Racing Medication and Testing Consortium.
The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium has set a deadline for adoption of recommended uniform medication violations and testing protocol for "milkshakes," which are mixtures of bicarbonate of soda and a liquid force-fed to a racehorse before it competes.
The Ohio State Racing Commission tightened its medication rules Jan. 20 to greatly reflect the model rules offered by the national Racing Medication and Testing Consortium. In another change, money will be deducted from each purse to defray all or part of the cost to test blood and urine samples.
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 Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association medication committee, in response to concerns from affiliates in Kentucky and Ohio, has asked its affiliates to make known their position on the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium's proposal for uniform medication and drug testing.
The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium continued its march toward a national model policy on medication and drug testing Dec. 10 when regulators responded favorably to the proposal. But wholesale changes in race-day medication rules around the country aren't expected to take place any time soon.
Regulators in the United States will get their first look at a proposed national medication and drug-testing policy Dec. 10, but even if it wins widespread support, it could take some time before any changes are enacted in various jurisdictions.
The chairman of the Kentucky Racing Commission has advocated a Salix-only policy on race day in the state, and said he would schedule meetings around the state to get feedback. Currently, five medications are permitted on race day in Kentucky.
With no opposition in sight, the Kentucky Racing Commission on Sept. 24 officially revised its Thoroughbred race-day medication policy to reduce the number of permitted substances from 16 to five.
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