Because the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has no rules on the book regulating the results of out-of-competition testing, it is unable to prosecute any of the positive tests or penalize those involved. Officials at the Red Mile, according to sources, have merely barred the horses from further competition at the current meeting, which ends on Saturday. Rules concerning out-of-competition testing at the Red Mile can be found
here.Red Mile president Joe Costa could not be reached for comment.
“The state does not have rules for out-of-competition testing,” said Jim Carroll, a communications officer for Kentucky's Public Protection Cabinet. “I would refer you to the Red Mile. The track has authority.”
Carroll would not confirm whether the indefinite suspensions announced on Thursday of two veterinarians, Rick Mather and Rick Rothfuss of Columbus, Ohio, were related to the alleged positive blood-doping tests. A press release from the commission said two Kentucky Horse Racing Commission investigators searched two trucks owned by the veterinarians and seized records and unidentified substances, which are being sent to a laboratory for testing. Richard Williams, the commission's presiding judge for Standardbred racing, imposed the suspension after reviewing the physical evidence. A hearing on the suspension is pending.
“It's gotten ridiculous,” one prominent Standardbred horsemen told the Paulick Report. “We have more vets driving around on the backstretch than we have horses back there.”
One state that takes a harsher view of blood-doping positive tests and possession of illegal blood-doping agents is New Jersey, whose racing commission routinely conducts out-of-competition testing. The
New Jersey Commission has issued bans of more than 15 years for horsemen and veterinarians caught in blood-doping schemes, and in one case criminal charges have been filed.
Copyright © 2008, The Paulick Report
Sign up for our Email Flashes to get the latest news, analysis and commentary from Ray Paulick
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2020 Paulick Report.