Hearing Set for Palomino AI Case

A hearing between the Jockey Club and a Palomino Thoroughbred breeder who feels she had registration documents revoked unfairly has been set for Aug. 9 in Lexington, Ky.

Retired Judge L. Grant will conduct the hearing that could decide whether the Jockey Club unfairly revoked the registrations of four horses admittedly bred by artificial insemination. The horses were bred by Lauren Efford, owner of Goldhope Farm near Intercourse, Penn., who claims she did not know artificial insemination violated Jockey Club rules when she first began breeding Thoroughbred for the golden Palomino coloring in 1997.

Efford's attorney Robert Hoffa said he hopes the hearing officer will review more than the bare facts of the case, which he said has been the Jockey Club's request. Hoffa hopes to argue that the ban on artificial insemination amounts to a violation of federal anti-trust laws. He also believes his client has been selectively prosecuted.

"There seems to be some evidence of the Jockey Club being aware of other A.I. cases and not taking any action," Hoffa said.

Jockey Club spokesman Bob Curran said he could not discuss specifics of Efford's case because it may still end up in court.