William Bianco Jr., a former racing commissioner and horse owner, suffered a stroke and died April 11 in San Jose, Calif. He was 75.
The Ohio State Racing Commission is moving forward to adopt drug-testing threshold levels as part of national model rules, and also indicated it will switch to post-race TCO2 screening and bring Thoroughbreds into the mix.
In a case that has ramifications for Thoroughbred racing, New York's highest court has refused to hear an appeal by a trainer suspended by state regulators for a pattern of alleged illegal equine drug violations involving horses at Monticello Raceway.
Breeders' Cup has added to its medication and testing policy and increased penalties for violators for 2009.
The Association of Racing Commissioners International has approved changes to existing model rules that crack down on suspended trainers transferring horses to family members or close associates during their time of suspension, and require trainers to request split samples of TCO2 testing at the original time of testing.
Testing for bicarbonate levels has nearly eliminated the incidence of "milkshaking" Thoroughbred racehorses in California, leading officials to consider alternatives to testing every horse that is entered at the state's tracks.
New York racing regulators July 31 adopted a series of new rules, including more restrictive prohibitions on betting by racetrack mutuel tellers and final action on a provision to combat "milkshaking" of horses.
As Churchill Downs prepares to host the Breeders' Cup World Championships, Kentucky regulators are examining the state's drug-testing policies and procedures. Upgrades, however, may hinge on state funding.
California will soon release the results of a study that will reflect trends in connection with blood samples taken from about 6,000 racehorses for the purpose of "milkshake" --or TCO2 testing-- last year.
Doug O'Neill, Hollywood Park's leading trainer, will run his horses out of a detention barn for the next 30 days because one of his starters tested over the permitted level for total carbon dioxide in May.
Thoroughbreds at Ohio racetracks will be tested for excessive levels of total carbon dioxide (TCO2) effective May 1, the Ohio State Racing Commission announced.
Trainer Don Rice, who has topped the Tampa Bay Downs trainer standings six times, has been suspended 30 days and denied access to the grounds of the Florida racetrack for the same period because two of his horses tested positive for "milkshakes" in the past week.
The California Horse Racing Board takes over testing for bicarbonate levels in racehorses Oct. 19, meaning that, in addition to an ongoing detention barn program for offenders, licensees whose horses exceed allowed levels for alkalizing substances face automatic purse forfeiture as well as possible fines and suspensions.
A bill that requires the California Horse Racing Board to enact rules for testing total carbon dioxide in the bloodstream of racehorses has been signed into law by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Hoosier Park is set to open its 60-day Thoroughbred meeting Saturday and if entries for the opening weekend are any indication, the Anderson oval could have a strong meet. A total of 14 races are carded for opening night, with 10 of the 11 Thoroughbred events attracting full fields.
Officials outlined the protocol for "milkshake" tests at Keeneland during an informational meeting April 6, and also told horsemen to be aware that some feed and supplements could help trigger a higher-than-normal TCO2 reading in a horse's blood.
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