Gorajec: Horse Racing Integrity Act Would Promote ‘Excellence And Independence’

by | 07.17.2017 | 11:44am
Racing at Belmont Park

In his latest column for Thoroughbred Racing Commentary, Joe Gorajec gives an overview of the Horse Racing Integrity Act, a Federal bill which would “empower the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) to be put in charge of a not-for-profit anti-doping authority to manage a such a program for horse racing.

In his column, Gorajec provides an overview of the bill, and also includes his thoughts on “how the new legislation might be applied.”

“The Horse Racing Integrity Act of 2017 would provide the uniformity in regulation that is the accepted standard in nearly all professional sports,” Gorajec writes. “This landmark legislation, however, brings much more than uniform application of standardized rules and protocols. It promotes the principles of integrity, excellence and independence, some of which have been long absent in many racing jurisdictions.”

Read more in Thoroughbred Racing Commentary

  • james smoot

    I 100 percent agree before it gets to late

  • ben

    The industry will never give up, the position they have.

    While it should be the best for the industry, I do think that integrity has absolute No meaning in todays racing world in the US. Look to the PENN freud and cheating case.

  • Noval

    One of Mr Gorajec’s biggest arguments centers on “out of competition testing” which he even puts in bold type. During his tenure in Indiana, he rammed through an “out of competition testing” program. I believe the grand total of cheaters caught by this expensive and intrusive program was zero. The failure of this program, which he now advocates as a national “one size fits all” prescription, was one of the reason why horsemen in Indiana banded together to urge his firing by the Indiana Racing Commission. I hardly think failed proposals from a discredited ex-regulator should be taken seriously.

    • Tinky

      lol!

      OCT has proven beyond a shadow of a doubt to be the most important step that can be taken in efforts to stop blood doping in various sports. The reason that it hasn’t proven successful yet in horse racing in terms of catching cheaters is because it hasn’t been used systematically, nor been employed consistently well.

  • Richard C

    “Transparency” is a real bad word to the enablers of the cheaters.

  • longshot

    Gorajerk thinks that if you have a trainers license and a stable of horses your automaticly a cheater

  • venetian

    Who’s gonna pay for all this< Better ask yourselves that

  • horsepower

    Pay for it now before it’s too late…walls closing in

  • Peter Scarnati

    Some things just don’t sit well with me on this topic.
    First of all, it seems fabulously over-simplistic to assume that the testing of a much small group human athletes will automatically translate to a large population of equines.
    Secondly, the notion the Federal government, through “limited authority,” or any other type of program, can “fix” anything is highly suspect.
    Thirdly, I see no inclusion of any racetrack expertise on the “Authority.” This is puzzling to me since tracks seem to have the largest financial stake from a profit perspective in the industry.
    Finally, Gorajec’s admission that the “costs have yet to be determined” is extremely troubling.

    • Sampan

      Note item (iii).

      COMPOSITION.—The Authority shall be governed by a board (in this section referred to as the ‘‘Board’’) which shall be comprised of the following:
      (1) The chief executive officer of the United States Anti-Doping Agency.
      (2) Six individuals, selected by the United States Anti-Doping Agency from
      among members of 8 the board of the United States Anti-Doping Agency.
      (3) Six individuals selected by the United States Anti-Doping Agency—
      (A) from among individuals who represent different equine industry constituencies;
      and
      (B) such that—
      (i) at least 1 member has expertise in equine anti-doping and medication control regulation;
      (ii) at least 1 member has significant experience as an owner of covered horses or is a person with expertise in the breeding of race horses;
      (iii) at least 1 member was formerly employed as an executive with a racetrack;
      (iv) at least 1 member has a degree in veterinary medicine and either has
      expertise in equine veterinary practice with regard to race horses or
      expertise in veterinary research in matters affecting race horses;
      (v) at least 1 member has expertise in training covered horses; and
      (vi) at least 1 member has expertise in riding covered horses as a jockey.

  • perks

    Im all for cleaning it up, but do we really wanna believe the federal government can even do this? Only thing I can see is maybe some stiff federal charges and prison time for true cheaters. Have no faith in the government for obvious reasons, they have earned it.

  • Saratoga Bob

    Finally someone with common sense approach to race doping and outright cheating how you stay in this game has a trainer owner or bettor is the Question that is the primary topic that will destroy this beautiful sport if legislation does not get put in place 🏇🏇SOS we are killing the sport .

  • Sampan

    I don’t totally agree with Mr Gorajec’s assumptions or overview.
    There is a lot of work to be done on developing and administration within the Horse Racing Integrity Act of 2017 before any assumptions can be made.
    I want to study the Horse Racing Integrity Act of 2017 line by line and make notes as I review it.

    It’s critical it be done right the first time.
    It’s also important to have deifinitve poilicies, regulations and procedures in place..

  • Sampan

    I think the Horse Racing Integrity Act 2017 Authority is pretty inclusive, here’s why.

    COMPOSITION.—The Authority shall be governed by a board (in this section referred to as the
    ‘‘Board’’) which shall be comprised of the following:
    (1) The chief executive officer of the United States Anti-Doping Agency.
    (2) Six individuals, selected by the United States Anti-Doping Agency from among
    members of 8 the board of the United States Anti-Doping
    Agency.
    (3) Six individuals selected by the United States Anti-Doping Agency—
    (A) from among individuals who represent different equine industry constituencies;
    and
    (B) such that—
    (i) at least 1 member has expertise in equine anti-doping and medication control regulation;
    (ii) at least 1 member has significant experience as an owner of covered horses or
    is a person with expertise in the breeding of race horses;
    (iii) at least 1 member was formerly employed as an executive with a racetrack;
    (iv) at least 1 member has a degree in veterinary medicine and either has expertise in equine veterinary practice with regard to race horses or expertise in veterinary research in matters affecting race horses;
    (v) at least 1 member has expertise in training covered horses; and
    (vi) at least 1 member has expertise in riding covered horses as a jockey.

    STANDING COMMITTEES –
    (1) IN GENERAL.—The Authority shall establish one or more standing advisory and
    technical committees, which shall include qualified representatives from horse racing industry constituencies, including trainers, owners, the breed registry, veterinarians, regulators, race tracks, testing laboratories, bettors, and jockeys.
    (2) COMMITTEE ON DEVELOPMENT AND MAINTENANCE OF THE HORSE RACING ANTI-DOPING AND MEDICATION CONTROL
    PROGRAM.—
    The Authority shall establish a standing advisory committee, which shall include medication and regulatory experts and other representatives from horse racing industry constituencies, to provide advice and guidance to the Board on the development and maintenance of the horse racing anti-doping and medication control program.

    I don’t have any problem with the above process and composition.

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