Two Harness Vets Suspended, Fined

Barns were searched at The Red Mile harness track.

(Edited press release)

Veterinarians Rick Rothfuss and Rick Mather of  Columbus, Ohio, each have been fined $10,000 and have drawn six-month suspensions as a result of an initial investigation at The Red Mile trotting track in Lexington, Ky.

Richard Williams, presiding judge for the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC), imposed the penalties in a ruling announced today.

On Oct. 1, KHRC investigators searched two vehicles owned by the veterinarians as they were treating horses at The Red Mile. The investigators seized records and unidentified substances.

Following a hearing, Williams ruled that the two men violated state regulations by failing to properly label medications. They also possessed substances that did not follow Federal Drug Administration procedures for compounded medicines.

“These strict penalties underscore our determination to protect the racing industry,” said Lisa Underwood, KHRC executive director. “Because other racing jurisdictions will honor our enforcement actions, these suspensions bar them from practicing veterinary medicine at any race track for six months.”

 Underwood added that the investigation is on-going. The KHRC is awaiting test results on the substances found in the vehicles and is analyzing computer records.