An impending Congressional hearing on steroid use in Major League Baseball -- and the possibility the inquiry could expand to other sports -- has led the Thoroughbred racing industry to take preemptive action on Capitol Hill.
More than two-thirds of respondents to a Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association survey of auction buyers indicated they are less likely to purchase a horse that has undergone a surgical procedure prior to being sold.
Model rules for race day medications, along with withdraw times and threshold levels for therapeutic drugs were a lively topic both Thursday morning and afternoon at the Association of Racing Commissioners International convention.
Scot Waterman, executive director of the national Racing Medication and Testing Consortium, said the group has made significant progress the last year in getting racing jurisdictions to adopt its chapter on medication and model rules, a uniform set of medication and drug-testing policies.
The Racing Medication and Testing Consortium has approved policy language on race-day use of Salix and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, as well as environmental contaminants, and also formed a subcommittee to review race-day security practices.
Jim Gallagher, executive director of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association Racing Integrity and Drug Testing Task Force, will leave the organization March 28 to take the position of vice president of pari-mutuel operations for the New York Racing Association.
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