Coalition For Horse Racing Integrity: In Wake of Vitali Case, ‘We Need Better Regulation’

by | 09.21.2016 | 8:30am
The Coalition For Horse Racing Integrity includes the Jockey Club, Breeders' Cup, WHOA, and Humane Society of the United States

The Paulick Received the following Letter to the Editor from the Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity, whose members include national and local organizations representing breeders, owners, sale consignors, racetracks and veterinarians 

As a group that shares the common belief that the Thoroughbred racing industry is in serious need of medication reform, we would like to commend the Paulick Report for its insightful, ongoing coverage of a saga involving a Florida-based trainer with numerous medication violations (“Vitali License Reinstated, Despite Record That Includes Complaint Of Cruelty.”

While the establishment of the National Uniform Medication Program has enabled some progress on the medication reform front, we still don't have uniformity of rules, drug-testing or penalties.

Clearly, the current path to uniformity enables unnecessary delay and uneven enforcement. Slap-on-the-wrist fines or suspensions are not deterring bad behavior. Repeat offenders just go about their business or take their horses elsewhere.

Does the state of Florida need any more motivation than this case to finally adopt the Multiple Medication Violation (MMV) Penalty System that is a key component of the RMTC's National Uniform Medication Program?

To be frank, it is hard to believe that the National Uniform Medication Program will ever live up to its name, which indicates meaningful adoption of all four of its components in all 38 racing jurisdictions.

That is why our group has rallied together, through the Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity, to encourage the adoption of a national, uniform standard for drugs and medication in American Thoroughbred racing, and the granting of rulemaking, testing and enforcement oversight to an entity created by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

We need better regulation and we need it to be independent regulation, such as that outlined in H.R. 3084 (the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act).

As we have said many time before: In a sport built on the integrity of competition, nothing is more important than a level playing field for the horses, jockeys, and trainers who compete, as well as the fans who wager on the races.

We would encourage interested parties to learn more about our coalition by visiting horseracingintegrity.com.

In the meantime, we hope the Paulick Report will continue to serve the industry with its crucial investigative reporting.

Signed,

Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity

 

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