environmental contamination

Top 10 Ways HISA Will Change Racing

Edited Press Release The anticipated implementation of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority's (HISA) Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Program by the Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU) on Mar. 27 will strengthen equine welfare and enhance confidence in the fairness of the sport. Here are the top 10 ways HISA's ADMC Program will change racing for the better: 1. For the first time, rules will be uniform and standardized across all states. The ADMC Program will bring all testing and results management under one central authority, ensuring greater transparency,...

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Attorney, Trainer Vienna Joins Epistolary Exchanges on HISA

As the deadline looms for congress to insert language into the full year-end omnibus spending bill to fix constitutional question marks surrounding the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act (HISA), proponents and critics of the law have taken to an epistolary standoff. Last week, trainers Wesley Ward and Larry Rivelli issued a letter through the National Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (HBPA) critiquing various aspects of the national program for "too many flaws, missteps and costs that could have been averted with true inclusion and transparency in its development." Earlier this...

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The `Black Eye' of Environmental Contamination, Part Two

(This is the second in a series we are doing on environmental contamination. Click here for part one.) Like a Matryoshka doll of conjecture and supposition, the very real threat of environmental contamination in the horse racing industry's testing protocols can play out like a game that becomes ever more intricate with each layer unpeeled. In part one of this series, we looked at a growing understanding of the array of possible contaminants in the backstretch environment coupled with ever more sensitive testing methodologies. But go deeper, and what emerges...

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The `Black Eye' of Environmental Contamination

Over the past year or so, a series of high-profile positives attributed to environmental contamination have dogged racing's highest-profile trainer, Bob Baffert. Last week, the California Horse Racing Board's Board (CHRB) conducted a hearing into the Dextrorphan positive incurred by the Baffert-trained Merneith (American Pharoah) in July. Connections had attributed the positive to cross-contamination stemming from Merneith's groom, who took DayQuil and NyQuil, both of which contain Dextrorphan. Before that were the positives from Arkansas in May, when the Grade I-winning Gamine (Into Mischief) and Charlatan (Speightstown) subsequently tested positive...

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Merneith Split Sample Confirms Presence of Dextrorphan

A hearing has been set for November 12 before the California Horse Racing Board's Board of Stewards after a split sample confirmed a positive result for the presence of Dextrorphan, a cough suppressant, in the sample from the Bob Baffert-trained Merneith (American Pharoah), who was second in the fourth race at Del Mar July 25, 2020. "Unfortunately, it's just another case of contamination," Craig Robertson, Baffert's attorney, told the TDN. "One of Bob's grooms had COVID, and he was the groom who was handling Merneith. He was taking both DayQuil...

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