'Milkshake' Testing to Begin for Thoroughbreds in Ohio

Edited press release

Thoroughbreds at Ohio racetracks will be tested for excessive levels of total carbon dioxide (TCO2) effective May 1, the Ohio State Racing Commission announced.

TCO2 testing is also referred to as "milkshake" testing. Milkshakes--bicarbonate of soda mixed with a liquid and administered through a tube--are believed to enhance performance. They are widely prohibited.

The Ohio commission has been testing TCO2 levels in Standardbred racehorses for more than five years.

Under the testing program, a horse with a TCO2 level in excess of 37 millimoles per liter of blood in is violation of state regulations. The commission would then begin disciplinary action against the trainer.

When testing begins May 1, three Thoroughbred tracks--Beulah Park, River Downs, and Thistledown--will be open for live racing.