Zarooni and Cibelli: A Study in Contrasts

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Trainers Mahmood Al Zarooni and Jane Cibelli Trainers Mahmood Al Zarooni and Jane Cibelli

On Jan. 27, a veterinarian hired by Tampa Bay Downs to conduct pre-race soundness examinations walked into trainer Jane Cibelli’s barn and caught private vet Orlando Paraliticci allegedly injecting a horse’s leg only hours before it was to race.

Ninety days later, no charges have been filed against Cibelli or the vet, though Tampa Bay Downs management found what happened egregious enough to kick Paraliticci off its premises. The Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering, which regulates horse racing in the state (and I use the term “regulates” loosely), has not even scheduled a hearing into the matter.

Ninety days. Nothing.

On April 9, officials with the British Horseracing Authority paid a visit to the Moulton Paddocks in Newmarket, England, where Mahmood Al Zarooni stabled 45 Thoroughbreds for Sheikh Mohammed’s powerful Godolphin operation. They took samples from every horse, and 12 days later announced that 11 horses tested positive for anabolic steroids – four for stanozolol, best known by the trade name Winstrol, and seven for ethylestranol, or Nitrotain.

(Two years ago I wrote about the abuse of Nitrotain and another steroid, Paylean, better known on the backstretch as “pig juice” because it is designed to build muscle in swine. Click here for that article.)


Two days after the positive test results were made public, the British Horseracing Authority filed charges against Zarooni and notified Godolphin the horses were ineligible to race until further notice. A hearing date was conducted April 25, exactly 16 days after the raid at Moulton Paddocks.

Everyone in racing knows the results of that hearing now. Zarooni was handed an eight-year ban from the sport. The 11 horses that tested positive (along with four others the trainer admitted were also given steroids) are prohibited from racing for six months.

That is quite a study in contrasts.

In Florida, we’ve seen an alleged serious breach of conduct go 90 days without a hiccup from the regulatory agency that is supposed to police the sport. In England, it took just 16 days from the time out-of-competition samples were taken until a trainer’s license was suspended for eight years for violating drug rules.

The British Horseracing Authority has actual authority to regulate the sport, to make the rules and to enforce them. Its leadership consists of people who take their jobs and the sport of horse racing quite seriously.

The Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering is run by a lifetime bureaucrat who knows nothing about horseracing and likely cares less. And even if DPMW director Leon Biegalski did know or care, he is limited by law as to what he can do.

And that is the inherent flaw, not just in Florida but throughout American horse racing’s regulatory structure. The sport does not control its own destiny and is regulated by too many people who just don’t care.

Out-of-competition testing, as the world’s most famous cheating athlete Lance Armstrong confessed, is what finally nailed him. That and a “biological passport,” which compares deviations in chemical parameters in an individual.

Out-of-competition testing nailed Mahmood Al Zarooni.

Yet in the United States, out-of-competition testing is done sporadically.

I’m no Einstein, but simple logic would suggest the following: a) If out-of-competition testing is the only way to detect cheating and doping of athletes (whether human or equine), and b) you are not doing out-of-competition testing, then c) you will not catch cheaters.

You know what Einstein said was the definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting different results.

Please, stop the insanity.

Footnote: If an American racing jurisdiction conducted out-of-competition testing and detected anabolic steroids in horses in training, it’s unclear whether any charges would have been filed against a trainer. Winstrol (stanozolol) is a perfectly legal drug for training in the U.S. (it may be used only for legitimate therapeutic reasons in England), although it is now prohibited for racing, with a recommended withdrawal time of at least 30 days. Nitrotain (ethylestranol) is not FDA-approved for use in the U.S.

Footnote II: If you don’t think American trainers are willing to cheat, remember this: in 2004, when the California Horse Racing Board did unannounced testing for illegal milkshakes (TCO2 levels, or bicarbonate loading), 23% of the horses tested were over a threshold level established for non-milkshaked horses. As more than one trainer has said to me over the years, “How can it be illegal if you don’t test for it?”

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  • indyone

    Don’t get me wrong……I love thoroughbreds…..but what fan can really support racing in the United States with this kind of crap going on? BB, Cibelli, DO’N….the list is endless.

    • jorge

      Looks like the problem is in Europe not the USA

      • LongTimeEconomist

        Want to explain that?

      • http://twitter.com/Pan_Zareta Erin

        There will always be attempts to cheat. The problem is letting it go on. So no,the problem isn’t over there and not here. In Europe they get BOTH caught AND punished accordingly. Because we don’t bother to do either is not a sign it isn’t a problem here.

      • http://twitter.com/Bellwether4U Bellwether

        That’s pure BS…You are like the guy running things in Florida…You don’t know a damn thing about Horse Racing…

      • http://twitter.com/Bellwether4U Bellwether

        That statement is a joke…Right???…

      • Augusto

        This stuff would never hold up in court. Lets just hope it goes away

        • giofal

          absolutely

    • http://twitter.com/Bellwether4U Bellwether

      Its real [edit] hard but I adore the Immortal/Beautiful Animals…Love to watch them run and gamble on them too…. Just have to handicap who doing the cheating!!!…Sad isn’t it…

    • nu-fan

      :…but what fan can really support racing in the United States with this kind of crap going on?” Perhaps, that is just one of many reasons that there has been a decline in fan interest. From the conversations I’ve had with friends and acquaintenances, there is a belief that horseracing is not ckean.

    • upstarthere

      What goes on behind those hedges at JJ’s training farm in Ocala?

    • giofal

      Why the linching, when has Cibelli been punished for a flagrant violation in the past? I will tell you as I have the factual information, the vet will be punished and she will get a violation ONLY for not being there at the time. As it will come out that she did NOT order the juice for that day and the vet made the error. In fact he has stated that to all of the officials involved. For one minute would he have done that knowing he would lose his main business account were it not true?

    • giofal

      Indy, I ask you check Cibeli’s record/ And do you think for one moment ELEVEN HORSES WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE compares in any way to ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE ON THE WRONG DAY – UNSUBTANSIATED is a valid comparison? It is like the Boston Marathon Bombers being compared to a traffic violation. You are most likely an intelligent person, is it possible the writer has an agenda against Jane??

  • http://twitter.com/racetrackandy Andy Asaro

    How many horses died under their care in the last 15 months? Just asking.

    • giofal

      NONE!!!! I ask you check Cibeli’s record/ And do you think for one moment ELEVEN HORSES WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE compares in any way to ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE ON THE WRONG DAY – UNSUBTANSIATED is a valid comparison? It is like the Boston Marathon Bombers being compared to a traffic violation. You are most likely an intelligent person, is it possible the writer has an agenda against Jane??

    • giofal

      NONE NONE NONE

  • Don Reed

    England honest, America corrupt.

    • betterthannothing

      In the UK, the majority wanted clean, safe racing and fair competition
      and created (or allowed the creation of) the BHA for the love of the
      sport of horse racing.

      In the US, the majority wants to drug
      horses in secrecy to maximize early speed and earnings, it tolerates
      abuse and protects abusers for the love of money and fame.

      • Stanley inman

        While there is no shortage of facts to support your thesis
        It’s a bit more complicated;
        Transparency will facilitate
        Reverse engineering, leaving nowhere to hide;
        Everyone will adjust to new reality;
        It’s been just two years in coming
        Two more will move us way down the road (IMO)

      • Don Reed

        No argument with the above from me, that’s for certain.
        Yes, it’s a simplistic statement. And in this context, the simpler, the better.

  • anderson5999

    The way drug cheats are handled in this country is disgraceful.

  • voiceofreason

    On Jan. 27… caught private vet… injecting a horse’s leg only hours before it was to race. Ninety days later, no charges have been filed against Cibelli or the vet. So? What’s yer point? What about January 26th? 28th? Any other vet, at any other track, with any other trainer. Who cares?

    We are corrupt, broken. That’s all. Not a big deal, really. Is it so tough to recognize what’s staring back at us in the mirror? And who cares, really? The Vets own the game. Their control is too important to allow change. Too much money. It’s over. The market has left us, no one cares, there is no more sport to matter. Those in charge are the same people who squelch change, as they should. It protects their pockets. These conversations, these enlightening accusations and insights – are as important as the feather on the arrow that pierces your heart. It gotcha there, but ain’t the thing killing you.

    there is no reason to market the sport… it’s dead. the age/demographic is older every year, the wagering is dropping, no one cares. yawn-fest. visionless, cardboard sleep aide. nighty night.

    • Beachy

      The vet angle is really appalling. Too many have lost sight of “first do no harm”–and, one of my best friends is a vet. I’m well aware that to really get into vet school these days, and even not too far back, one needs a 4.0 in undergrad. This can be hard to achieve, judging by the courseload–weedout classes like organic chemistry and vertebrate morphology, just to name a few. I’ve seen very smart people get their butts kicked by those classes, let alone what it takes to pass vet school. And based on what some of these horse vets are doing to these horses, obviously ethics and intellect do not go hand-in-hand. Also, if people are going to cheat, you’d rather have dumb people cheat. The smart ones are better at it and less apt to get caught. Nauseating… :/

      • Lynn

        You are correct , one must be at the top of the class in organic chemistry, biochemistry, physics, calculus, biology, and so on to be accepted to veterinary school.

        Then there are many years of even more demanding course work ,training, and rigorous testing in veterinary school. After graduation, multiple national and state examinations must be past in order to get a license to practice as a veterinarian.

        Why would a professional put so much at risk?

        Dr. Orlando Paraliticci, the veterinarian in trainer Jane Cibelli barn that allegedly was injecting a horse’s leg only hours before it was to race, would not likely be doing that unless directed (TOLD) to do so by trainer Jane Cibelli.

        Dr. Paraliticci was kicked off the track. Trainer Jane Cibelli was not kicked off the track.
        Tampa Jane, Belmont Jane, Whatever Track Jane, moves on.

        • giofal

          Lynn check this out, why did the vet admit he did it without her being there, knowing he would virtually lose his practice in Oldsmar Please if you are an intelligent person without an agenda think about that, as he has said this to every agency he faces. This author has an agenda and many here fall for it

          • Lynn

            Yes, I see what you mean, the author certainly has his view.

    • upstarthere

      Some vets may own the really high profile trainers (you don’t hear those trainers speaking out about the med abuses; nor their really high profile owners) but make NO MISTAKE, it’s the high profile TRAINERS who own the game, absolutely un level playing field and all. Granted they are enabled but they are the absolute insurers (laughing hysterically…TAP/LAT/Candy DeBartolo). They don’t even care that it’s common knowledge.

  • http://twitter.com/frankambessi Frank Ambessi

    Horse racing has turned into Americas Tour Da France. Sad how quickly trainers have chosen the lance armstrong route

    • Stanley inman

      Great analogy;

    • http://twitter.com/Pan_Zareta Erin

      Except racing in the U.S. has likely never been clean. Racing consumers and the public (and the technology to catch cheaters) are finally just getting more sensitive to and aware of this fact.

  • Thegospeltruth

    I see Cibelli has taken her “magic” act to Belmont. Meanwhile the Florida Commission ponders the 80 plus Clenbuterols positives they have foisted upon Florida horsemen that weren’t made aware of the testing change. Who has time to worry about “Carbocaine Jane.”

    • giofal

      Where do you come off with that crap? Have you ever checked her out, she has NEVER been cited for a violation for what you say. You could be sued for that type of nonsense.,

  • Anonymous

    Hopefully the Florida State Investigation into Cibelli will be released shortly. Certainly has been quiet. No commentary from the vet or trainer for 3 months. Maybe investigation is delayed because they keep finding more dirt on these 2 ?? Looks like the rotten apple is taking her act to the Big Apple tomorrow. Hope she lays an egg!!

    • giofal

      I ask you check Cibeli’s record/ And do you think for one moment ELEVEN HORSES WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE compares in any way to ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE ON THE WRONG DAY – UNSUBTANSIATED is a valid comparison? It is like the Boston Marathon Bombers being compared to a traffic violation. You are most likely an intelligent person, is it possible the writer has an agenda against Jane??

      • Matt Clarke

        Eleven horses treated “out of competiton” with steroids which by the way are allowed in the US on race day at determined levels and you are comparing this with blocking a leg on race day? By the way what allowed substance do you block a leg with on race day?

        • giofal

          they were not out of competition the were in training that happens to be the rule in Europe, that it is different here is of not consequence. I don’t know the exact name of the agent used but it is a painkiller, similar to what you would take for a ache or pain and it is allowed and all trainers use it up to 3 days prior to a race.

  • old horse lover

    Interesting isn’t it.Read an article in Science Daily about eating livestock given banned drugs for humans and it showing up in tested athletes as a positive for the banned substances.Total disregard of rules and bans and not enforcing them going to bring down racing in the eyes of the world and destroy the trust of any new fans that racing could attract.PLUS we are eating this stuff our selves and have no idea what it is doing to us.I know one doesn’t seem to have a lot to do with the other but everything we put into and on Agricultural products effects us all sooner or later.

  • Hopefieldstables

    Ray, your statement on steroids in the UK requires some clarity.

    From the BHA:

    “Anabolic steroid must not be used in horses in training. If veterinary
    advice dictate the use of anabolic steroids the condition of the horse
    is likely to be such that it should be taken out of training.”

    • salthebarber

      Given that Zarooni trained in different jurisdictions, is it not possible that there was some confusion on what was allowed? Did any of these horses recently come from Dubai?

      • Hopefieldstables

        It is not inconceivable that he did not know.

        Moreover, as I mentioned to you before, he only started in 2010 coming from outside the UK so he would not be as familiar with the rules as someone who worked in the UK their whole life.

        That said, it seems the drugs were given clandestinely and not recorded. Thus it seems he had some idea that giving steroids was a problem.

  • Lizz

    Incredible article. England gives us a picture of what the sport would look like if we had central leadership. Their actions against steroid usage and medication leads the way for racing around the world. We would benefit as an industry and as a sport to follow their example and to unite. We won’t ever get anything accomplished if we continue to argue the same things without taking any action. 16 days with a verdict versus 90 days with well…nothing. It’s just embarrassing how little we seem to care about the integrity of our sport..

    • Roisin

      Without integrity there is eventual unraveling. It has, for along time, seemed amazing to me that there is no central governing body in racing. Horses and trainers go from state to state to compete and rules as well as enforcement differ from state to state.

    • Beachy

      And, news flash: HORSES DOOOO WIN RACES IN ENGLAND

  • http://www.facebook.com/ben.vandenbrink.52 Ben van den Brink

    If the public want,s to change racing, than stop visiting races and stop betting, because than the pockets are beiing hit and the lessons will be taken.

  • Bryan Langlois (ShelterDoc)

    Can anyone from across the pond tell me what the appeals process is like in Britain for something like this? I feel one of the reason these issues drag on for so long in America is because the trainers immediately lawyer up and the lawyers do their job to drag it out as long as possible with continuances and appeals and the like. Do trainers in Britain have that option? Is the ruling of the BHA more inforceable and less likely to court overturn like state jursidictions rulings are? I’m just curious as I think that aspect also goes a long way towards thing. Of course having a trainer just come out and be honest like he was in this case, something you will never see in the states, and say he did it also probably helped things along a little bit.
    I also wonder if this had been a higher profile trainer if the ban would have been as long. I know the racing outfit is world reknown, but the trainer really isn’t compared to an Aiden Obrien or Andre Faub. It makes me wonder if the ban would have been 8 years if it had been one of them. Hopefully it would be.
    I do agree that the process in the states is rediculous, and if all these so called regulators could care less…then I say just pass a law giving the power back to the people that do care and can impose harsh penalties that have some bite in them and can’t be endlessly appealed.

    • LongTimeEconomist

      Ask Patrick Biancome about what can happen to big name trainers in Europe.

    • Hopefieldstables

      There is an appeals board but one must have specified grounds for appeal.

      Following the High Court case of Allysa, the High Court does not have jurisdiction over the decisions of the BHA save that they concern matters of public law.

      Thus as far as this case goes, Zarooni is very unlikely to be granted an appeal and the high court is unlikely to grant judicial review (unless he could show he was given an unfair hearing).

      Since Allysa (1989) I do not think there has been a single attempt to overturn a BHA decision in the High Court.

      • Hopefieldstables

        And Zarooni is as high profile as they get. To think that OBrien or Fabre would have been treated any different is absurd on the face of what has happened.

  • quit covering4them

    Dateline Southern California 2013……..Robertino Diodoro positive TCO2……Action by “Authority” $3,000. fine and 30 day suspension with 15 of the 30 day suspension STAYED!!
    Words mean nothing unless sanctions of some consequence follow!

  • Big Red

    Excellent reporting Ray !
    Now, when the the folks at NBC (on Derby Day) or the NY Times gets wind of this and the report goes viral, lets not get on their case and instead applaud their efforts in bringing this disgrace of a game to the forefront.

    • giofal

      Bullcrap it is agenda reporting at worst!! I ask you check Cibeli’s record/ And do you think for one moment ELEVEN HORSES WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE compares in any way to ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE ON THE WRONG DAY – UNSUBTANSIATED is a valid comparison? It is like the Boston Marathon Bombers being compared to a traffic violation. You are most likely an intelligent person, is it possible the writer has an agenda against Jane??

  • Lou Baranello, Former Steward

    So long as horse racing in this country continues to adhere to the status quo, there can never, I repeat never, be fair, honest and forthright regulation of the industry. One word, POLITICS, is the poison in the formula. In each racing state the governor appoints the members of the racing commission. The racing commission members appoint or approve all stewards. Too many stewards are beholden to the racing commission and their own personal agendas and, likewise, too many racing commissioners are beholden to the governor and their own personal agendas. Many egregious adjudications have resulted from this process and I have been present to bear witness on numerous occasions.

    • giofal

      As long as agenda driven articles such as this are allowed to be published . I ask you check Cibeli’s record/ And do you think for one moment ELEVEN HORSES WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE compares in any way to ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE ON THE WRONG DAY – UNSUBTANSIATED is a valid comparison? It is like the Boston Marathon Bombers being compared to a traffic violation. You are most likely an intelligent person, is it possible the writer has an agenda against Jane??

  • Beachy

    “The 11 horses that tested positive (along with four others the trainer
    admitted were also given steroids) are prohibited from racing for six
    months.”

    And I wonder how many of the owners will ditch them at the abattoir because they don’t want to be bothered with caring for them for six months? Another thing we need more of, right?! Slaughter…

    :-/

    Bear in mind, too, that the BHA testing and policies not only help the horses, it maintains a level playing field. In America, more likely to stay on a level playing field, one must cheat because others are cheating. Corruption will beget corruption. Cancer cells are more subtle than this, and one also wonders why the sport is in such trouble and has a sub-ideal reputation…DUH…

    If one lives with a philosophy of “If you can’t test for it, how is it illegal”, that would justify giving the horses just about anything that does not yet have a test…heck, why not Salvia?!! Maybe that would make them hallucinate winning and they’d run better..Puh-leeze… :-(

    One can barely call anything in America associated with horse racing “regulatory”. I could tell you what I would call it, but I’d get censored. :-) My Navy-trained spouse taught me too well…

    And again, thoughts always with the horses, the real victims in all this.

    • Hopefieldstables

      There is only one owner, Godolphin, the horses are all very valuable and will continue to be cared for during the 6 months.

      • Beachy

        If true, thank God for that, and for saying so. :-)

    • giofal

      Lets look at the FACTS, the Godolphin situation comprised of 11 horses with a BANNED SUBSTANCE. Cibelli accusation is a ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE on the wrong day, and again an accusation Lets try to be just a little fair here this is like comparing the Boston Marathon bombing to the Ricin letters (which have proven not to be ricin)

      • Matt Clarke

        more nonsense.

  • forestwidcat

    Margo will keep her buddy out of trouble

    • upstarthere

      And there in lies the problem.

      • Allen rocket

        No she won’t. Berube won’t allow this to get swept under the rug. He is forced to wait out the State investigation. Once it’s
        Complete, he will act. He will not allow that trainer to drag his name into the mud.

        • giofal

          AND YOU KNOW THIS HOW???

          • Allen Rocket

            I don’t know. It’s a guess. I see a hard working guy that has built a national name for what use to be a third tier track. He said in the DRF that the state is investigating, and he has to wait it out. I see a man of integrity, and my guess he won’t allow a potty mouthed trainer with a reputation for being nasty to everyone she runs into, to drag Stella Thayers track down.

          • giofal

            And she is not hard working? Potty mouth yeah that is the ONLY infraction she has been cited for no drugs etc. Do you want to know what happened during the so called potty mouth incident. Do you for one minute care about the truth or are you like the author who did not even call Jane for a statement, the only contact with Margo was a midnight text! You have every right to guess but a journalist should have facts before they defame someone don’t you think. If you want to hear what happened during the pottymouth incident I will explain it and is shows yes some bad language but her concern for a horse.

          • Allen rocket

            I don’t know what incident you are talking about. I said “potty mouth” because it references the reputation she has for cussing. Since you offered, what is “the potty mouth” incident? I’m very curious. Ps I’m sure she is hard working, never said she wasn’t. Maybe she is innocent, those facts will come out. I am not trying to sully her reputation. I was sticking up for the GM, because of all the references that he will ignore it or let this go. If the facts are against this trainer, I was guessing that Berube would act accordingly. Calm down.

          • RayPaulick

            giofal,

            Anyone may go to http://www.thoroughbredrulings.com and see that what you are saying about trainer Jane Cibelli is factually incorrect.

            I have never sent “Margo” a text message at midnight or any other time.

          • http://www.facebook.com/margo.sherwoodflynn Margo Sherwood Flynn

            Ray, it was an email at 11:47pm Friday evening!

          • RayPaulick

            Am quite aware of when I am working and send emails. And you were kind enough the next day to fix the website link I asked about. Thanks!

          • upstarthere

            Still laughing hysterically!

          • upstarthere

            Laughing hysterically!

        • upstarthere

          Oh, ok, right. Will get back to you on that.

  • Mimi Hunter

    The search for a magic potion to give the edge to one party in any competitive action has been around probably since day one. The feed and feeding schedule, excercise schedule, tack, out everything are guarded ‘trade secrets’. If something works, it would be like pulling hens teeth to change things just because it is now banned. Maybe if trainers themselves formed a group and avoid illegal drugs and practices, something positive may happen. Then they’d have to selectively breed for soundness of limb and wind. What a novel thought ! !

    • giofal

      I ask you check Cibeli’s record/ And do you think for one moment ELEVEN HORSES WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE compares in any way to ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE ON THE WRONG DAY – UNSUBTANSIATED is a valid comparison? It is like the Boston Marathon Bombers being compared to a traffic violation. You are most likely an intelligent person, is it possible the writer has an agenda against Jane??

      • Mimi Hunter

        I ask you to go back and reread what I wrote – there was no reference to this specific drugging issue – rather a condemation on the entire practice. Trainers are looking for a special ‘magic bullet’ either one drug [like the steroids] or a combination of things that will make their horses unbeatable. Who is Jane?

  • Don Reed

    Ray, any update from Lance Armstrong Downs, in Tampa?

    And now that the Post Office is no longer using L.A. as their spokeman, are they negotiating with Rich Dutrow’s agent? Jane’s? Margo’s? Package deal, all three on the ladder, next week, conducting the singing of “My Old Kentucky Home” at the Derby?

    Meanwhile the 3rd-World-induced conditions at the airports – The FAA is now blaming them not on the sequestration, but on the air traffic controllers.

    We can no longer pay for the steroids.

  • Richard C

    It speaks volumes on a “sport” when the sports-entertainment operation – WWE – has a better drug testing program for its performers.

  • dogman

    How about some thanks to the State Vet who witness this act and reported this to the Stewards. What would it be like without prerace exams.

  • http://twitter.com/zerosumzen zerosumzen

    Out-of-competition testing is the one and only way to clean up the sport. And no more slaps on the wrist. Jail time for repeated serious offenders.

  • Rockbarton

    So now we know why Jane C. left jolly old England. Over there,quick justice,over here, carry on and keep cheating.

    • BonnieMcDo

      But why did NYRA let her run her horse at Belmont. There is no “right” to be able to enter a horse in a race. The NYRA track now is full of “super trainers’ Claiming among these guys is fierce. Horses are running very fast races when a few years ago the claimers RAn like claimers. I give up. Have not bought any more horses. Will run my 2 ny breds at Finger Lakes . Will only race my one home bred and get out in the next year or two.

  • José DeCamargo

    They observed the letter of the law and forgot the
    meaning of the law

  • john

    Jane Cibelli, ONE non-proven allegation with a NON BANNED substance, this guy 11 HORSES for a banned substance! A WITCH HUNT when did your objectivity leave the premise, well maybe it was never here. see below!
    On April 9, officials with the British Horseracing Authority paid a visit to the Moulton Paddocks in Newmarket, England, where Mahmood Al Zarooni stabled 45 Thoroughbreds for Sheikh Mohammed’s powerful Godolphin operation. They took samples from every horse, and 12 days later announced that 11 horses tested positive for anabolic steroids – four for stanozolol, best known by the trade name Winstrol, and seven for ethylestranol, or Nitrotain.

    • RayPaulick

      The point of the article, John, is that the British Horseracing Authority took a case that involved a stable raid, testing, an investigation, and a hearing, and completed it in 16 days. The stewards at Tampa Bay Downs, whether they are answering to track management or the Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering, have not conducted a hearing yet, 90 days after the incident. It is a failure of the stewards, under the direction of either the regulatory board or Tampa Bay Downs, to do their job in a timely manner.

      • giofal

        BULL CRAP the point of the article was to compare BANNED SUBSTANCES IN 11 HORSES to ONE HORSE WITH AN APPROVED SUBSTANCE because you have an agenda. That is similar to comparing the Boston Marathon Bombing to a traffic ticket and you know it NOW YOU ARE TRYING TO HIDE, I WILL NOT LET YOU UNTIL YOU STATE YOUR BIASED AGENDA. CHECK JANES RECORD IF YOU HAVE THE GUTS AND THEN POST IT

      • salthebarber

        Ray, one does have to wonder what the BHA’s motivation was to move so quicky. Even in the U.K. the press is feeling discomfort about the speed of the ruling. There is speculation being tossed around that the speed of the decision was more about clearing the Sheikh ‘s name and keeping him in the U.K.. Actually, it might have been better if they moved slowly and truly understood what went on here. But, definitely not as slowly as in Florida.

        • Tinky

          Wrong. The investigation is ongoing, so no one has been “cleared”.

          • salthebarber

            Right or wrong. This is what is being discussed in the press, even the NYTimes.

        • Hopefieldstables

          I think you are trying hard to find an issue.

          Sheikh Mo has decided to cooperate fully and this has directly helped things move swiftly. It is a clearly a good strategy on his part and in everyone’s interest. Perhaps he feels very confident there is no evidence linking him, again a good thing.

          Do you really have to wonder the BHA’s motivation?

          Every regulatory body’s motivation is to move swiftly and the trainer has strict liability. The investigation is not closed and ramifications will be felt for a while. I suspect the out of comp program will be enhanced.

          I think there is little chance Sheikh Mo will leave. He will likely want to do the opposite; go back to winning and demonstrate he can do it under increased scrutiny.

          The NYT comparison with the Aga Khan is laughable. The Aga Khan did not cooperate and challenged the labs competence.

          • salthebarber

            I read something on a BBC article saying the same. Almost all of the commenters had similar questions. Why is it that so many here are quick to condemn Jane C and then not have any questions about the BHA and the Sheikh?

          • Hopefieldstables

            Probably the best evidence to support the owner is that Saeed bin Suroor tested clean.

            If this was systematic Godolphin policy it seems very unlikely one yard would test entirely clean.

          • salthebarber

            The Paulick Report is praising the BHA in this matter and the U.K. is talking about whether horseracing will survive this scandal. I think the PR view on what is going on in this case is too skewed by what is going here.

          • Hopefieldstables

            Actually I find over in the UK, everyone is saying how could Zarooni be so stupid.

      • salthebarber

        Ray, as a reporter you are not looking at the possibility that Zarooni’s confession and the BHA’s quick decision were done to help the Prince save face. This is certainly being talked about in the U.K.

  • salthebarber

    NYTimes reports that there is speculation in Europe that the rush to judgement in this case was related to clearing the Sheikh’s name as quickly as possible. There appears to be some concern that he might pull his support of British racing. Also, I learned that Dubai allows horses to train using anabolic steriods.

    • RayPaulick

      Interesting point. I suppose the ultimate cover-up would be to claim contamination of feed or to simply brush the test results under the rug. What I was also unaware until reading some followup stories to the hearing is that you can train on anabolic steroids in Dubai, where Mahmood Al Zarooni claims to have gotten the drugs.

      I think a bigger question revolves around the integrity of testing in Dubai. Several American trainers I’ve spoken have said they believe testing may not be the same for all horses.

  • Needcahones

    Good article Ray.

    • giofal

      BULLCRAP A WITCH HUNT this guy I think must have a trainer boyfriend who is jelouse I ask you check Cibeli’s record/ And do you think for one moment ELEVEN HORSES WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE compares in any way to ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE ON THE WRONG DAY – UNSUBTANSIATED is a valid comparison? It is like the Boston Marathon Bombers being compared to a traffic violation. You are most likely an intelligent person, is it possible the writer has an agenda against Jane??

    • giofal

      Baloney it was a witch hunt maybe he has a trainer boyfriend only a question who was jealous I ask you check Cibeli’s record/ And do you think for one moment ELEVEN HORSES WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE compares in any way to ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE ON THE WRONG DAY – UNSUBTANSIATED is a valid comparison? It is like the Boston Marathon Bombers being compared to a traffic violation. You are most likely an intelligent person, is it possible the writer has an agenda against Jane??

  • giofal

    I WANT ALL OF YOU TO RESPOND TO THIS QUESTION OR AT LEAST THINK ABOUT IT
    Godolphin had ELEVEN HORSES DOSED WITH A BANNED SUBSTANCE – A FACT!!
    Jane Cibelli is ACCUSED OF USING ONE ALLOWED SUBSTANCE BY HER VET AT THE WRONG TIME. She has denied being the which has been substantiated. No matter. Is this and honest comparison? Cmon throw away your prejudices, is this truly a fair comparison. NO NO NO UNLESS THERE IS AN AGENDA. I ALSO AS EACH AND EVERY ON OF YOU TO check Jane Cibelli’s record then you can spout all your negatives but my bet is you will find the WRITER HAS AN AGENDA I don’t think this is true but maybe one of his BOYFRIEND trainers is jealous of her success and he doesn’t like it Cmon you are all intelligent people does this comparison make sense it is like comparing the Boston Marathon bombers to a traffic ticket.

    • Matt Clarke

      Nonsense.

    • RayPaulick

      giofal -

      Let me be clear about something. I do not have any boyfriend trainers, jealous of Jane Cibelli or otherwise. I do not have any girlfriend trainers. I do not have any trainers that I would consider friends. There is an expression that if you work in the horse industry and want a true friend, get a dog. I have a dog.

      My agenda on this article was to expose activities that I believe are detrimental to horse racing, and I think the regulation of horse racing in Florida by the Department of Pari-Mutuel Wagering is one of those activities that hurts the game. The article compares the swift and authoritative handling of medication violations in England with the incompetent handling by state (and/or track) officials of the Jan. 27 incident at Tampa Bay Downs.

    • Hopefieldstables

      Get help.

      • giofal

        If you cannot see the difference it is you that needs help, or perhaps you choose not to want to see it, is that the case?

        • Hopefieldstables

          You cant even see what is being compared

  • Jay Stone

    This problem is out of control in Florida. There is absolutely on control by any regulatory agency and the tracks are not taking action by invoking house rules. Why has N.Y. Buried Dutrow for minor infractions while Fla. lets Cibelli and others reside on the backside without even a hearing?

  • Jake

    Dear Giofal: Are you for real?? Are you Margo?? You keep on repeating, ad nauseum, the idea that injecting a single horse in Cibelli’s barn is somehow minor league in comparison to the 11 in Europe. Well, (drum roll…) it’s not! It’s EQUALLY galling! Equally creepy! Equally bad! Equally horrible! Equally detestable! And… if you foolishly question the ethics of Mr Paulick one more time, I’m going to send you to bed without your milk and cookies.

    • giofal

      Jake I guess you have a reading comprehension problem The Europe incident was ELEVEN HORSES GIVEN A BANNED SUBSTANCE. Ok you see that. Now we have A LEGAL SUBSTANCE (a pain killer) allowed three days prior to the race. It was given by the vet on race day. First of all that is not an offense that had she known of it been something she could have been BANNED for at worst a few weeks down vastly different from the Godolphin incident, and if you cannot see that you are the one with an agenda. I own some horses know Jane for years, check her record and it will stand up to anyone! She has more integrity in her little finger than the author ever will. Now answer me, are you Rays brother or intimate friend? And to use the term creepy perhaps you are is 10 yr old daughter?

      • sittin’ chilly

        Give it a rest. They were blocking a horse THE DAY OF THE RACE. It does not get any worse. The horse could be ready to snap a leg off and would not feel anything, putting it’s own and it’s riders life, as well as the lives of all the other horses and riders in the race at risk. Steroids constitute cheating in the UK, but they are nowhere near as egregious as this. The trainer bears responsibility. Compared to this, what Rick Dutrow was banned for is benign.

    • Rockbarton

      Well said Jake, perhaps Giofal is closer to the ‘Trampa’s’ than we think.

  • DeeBow

    Who is giofail?????

  • MrPick4

    4 months and counting ….anything from Berube & Flynn ?? …. State ????

  • Stanley inman

    Not near as pessimistic
    About central authority our future
    Transparency has brought us a long way
    In a very short time
    Awareness then action
    There are many ready to act
    For the horse and sport
    Like never before

  • Stanley inman

    Racing commissions are a serious obstacle
    For reinventing the sport;
    As long as current structure is in place
    horsemen and silent partner(tracks)
    Will continue their dominance
    To ruin.

  • Stanley inman

    Asingle HBPA member on a racing commission
    Can convince remaining members
    To vote with horsemen;
    Throw in a vet as a commission member
    And horsemen’s power jumps exponentially;
    Throwin tracks quietly on sidelines;
    Recipe for disaster.

  • Tired of the BS

    No Vet’s in a position of authority. Collectively they are the problem, IMO.

  • betterthannothing

    “No Vet’s in a position of authority.” Some have authority, like Dr. Rick Arthur.
    The self-serving vet fraternity is present everywhere in racing and is the problem.

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