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  • Q&A with Wayne Pacelle and Joe De Francis

  • Press Release: Coalition Members Advocate for Medication Reform at Horse Caucus Hearing

    April 28, 2016 – Prominent figures from the horse racing industry appeared today before members of the Congress to discuss the future of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015 (H.R. 3084).  The industry representatives were invited to participate in the panel by Congressional Horse Caucus Co-Chairs Andy Barr (R-Ky.) and Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.), who introduced the bipartisan bill last July.  This hearing presented an educational opportunity for Horse Caucus members and industry to examine the legislation and its authority to grant rulemaking, testing and enforcement of drug and medication use in Thoroughbred horse racing to an entity created under the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

    Panelists who spoke before Caucus included racehorse owner/professional chef Bobby Flay; former Maryland Jockey Club Owner Joe De Francis; National Horsemen's Benevolent & Protective Assocation CEO Eric Hamelback; and Coalition members Craig Fravel, President & CEO of Breeders’ Cup Ltd.; and Chauncey Morris, Executive Director of the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders.

    “Because we are a sea of individual jurisdictions,” said Flay in his statement, “we have not been even remotely close to getting everyone on the same page and I can say with the utmost certainty that will never happen. We need federal oversight and we need it now. … We need to rebuild the reputation of American horse racing so that the general public understands without question that we are putting the health and well-being of the horse first and foremost in the equation.”

    The Congressional Horse Caucus is made of 28 representatives from both parties, and is tasked with raising awareness of the American equine industry and its economic impact on the U.S.  Currently, the proposed H.R. 3084 has the support of 33 bipartisan members from the House of Representatives, including cosponsors from California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, New Jersey, New York and South Carolina.  

    In his statement, Fravel said, “We should not confuse progress with success and we who profess our commitment to integrity, uniformity and transparency should not be content with any system so long as there is room for major improvement.” He continued, “The system contemplated by H.R. 3084 shrinks 38 rulemaking and enforcement bodies to one. … It creates a system that makes sense, and I want to thank Congressman Barr and Congressman Tonko for their concern for our industry and their support for an effort to make a great sport as good as it can be.”

    The horse racing industry has been working to advance better rules pertaining to drugs, drug testing and penalties through the National Uniform Medication Program (NUMP) on a state-by-state basis, and while progress has been made, there still remain significant inconsistencies in standards and enforcement in the 38 states that permit pari-mutuel wagering. 

    The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015, which would authorize an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to create uniform, high standards in drug and medication testing and enforcement for Thoroughbred horse racing. The new Thoroughbred Horseracing Anti-Doping Authority (THADA), to be governed by a board of six USADA board members and five independent individuals from the racing industry, would work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country, funded entirely by industry at no cost to taxpayers. Among the provisions in the proposed legislation, THADA would develop and administer a nationwide anti-doping program that would go into effect beginning January 1, 2017.

    The Coalition’s membership includes major racing organizations, animal welfare groups, racing and wagering facilities and a grassroots organization with over 1,300 owners, trainers, breeders, and racing professionals.

    Additional information, including a list of coalition members, stories from supporters and ways to contact Congress to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

    NOTE: This release has been revised from its original version which was sent at 3 PM on April 28, 2016.
  • Letter to the Editor: Russell S. Cohen, DVM

    March 28, 2016 - Thoroughbred Daily News - Read More»
  • Cutting Through the Briars - by Eric Mitchell

    March 21, 2016 - The Blood Horse - Read More»
  • What Good Is A Model Rule In Horse Racing If No One Follows It?

    March 21, 2016 - The Paulick Report - Read More»
  • Letters To The Editor: H.R. 3084 Best Opportunity For Meaningful Reform

    March 19, 2016 - The Thoroughbred Daily News - Read More»
  • Hancock: A Proud ‘Elitist,’ And In Good Company

    March 14, 2016 - The Paulick Report - Read More»
  • Press Release: Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act Earns 25 House Cosponsors

    March 14, 2016 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity announced today that a number of additional members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed on in support of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015 (THIA) in recent weeks. Representatives Steve Stivers (R-OH), Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Duncan D. Hunter (R-CA), Luke Messer (R-IN), Rodney Davis (R-IL), Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), Chris Collins (R-NY), and Tony Cardenas (D-CA) signed on in the first two months of 2016. THIA now has a total of 25 cosponsors, demonstrating the growing momentum of support for the horse racing medication reform bill. 

    “I’m grateful for the members of Congress from both parties who have stepped forward to support the goals of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act,” said Congressman Andy Barr (R-KY), co-author of THIA.  “Achieving this milestone is evidence of the growing support for uniform medication standards which will enhance the safety and integrity of Thoroughbred horseracing in America.” 

    “I am energized to see this critical, bipartisan legislation approach 25 cosponsors,” said Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY), fellow co-author of THIA, “and I look forward to working with Congressman Barr to push this closer to the finish line. I am pleased to report that New York has 7 co-sponsors of H.R. 3084, the most of any state. I will also continue to stress the importance of this legislation to the House Energy and Commerce Committee and advocate for a hearing on this issue.”

    Tonko continued, “As I travel throughout New York's Capital Region, home to the famed Saratoga Race Course, constituents everywhere are enthusiastic about this potential for this legislation to reinvigorate the sport of kings. Last August, during the Saratoga meet, I had the opportunity to provide the keynote address at the Saratoga Institute on Equine, Racing & Gaming Law Conference, where I made the case that implementing uniform rules and enhancing respect for our equine athletes are essential elements to improve the image of the sport for today's discerning fans.”

    THIA, or H.R.3084, is the only legislative proposal with active support across the diverse stakeholders that make up America’s horse racing community. Signing on form both sides of the aisle, these new cosponsors also signify the widespread bipartisan support THIA continues to gain on Capitol Hill.

    In supporting THIA, the representatives join House co-authors Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY) as well as cosponsors Richard Hanna (R-NY), David Jolly (R-FL), Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Elise Stefanik (R-NY), Louise Slaughter (D-NY), Ted Yoho (R-FL), Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Susan Brooks (R-IN), Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), David Joyce (R-OH), Jerold Nadler (D-NY), Joe Wilson (R-SC), Mark Takano (D-CA), and James Himes (D-CT).

    The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015, which would authorize an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to create uniform, high standards in drug and medication testing and enforcement for Thoroughbred horse racing.

    The Coalition’s membership includes major racing organizations, animal welfare groups, racing and wagering facilities and a grassroots organization with over 1,200 owners, trainers, breeders, and racing professionals.

    Additional information, including a list of coalition members, stories from supporters and ways to contact Congress to express support for this legislation, is available at
    www.horseracingintegrity.com.

     

  • Press Release: New York Racing Association Board of Trustees Votes to Support Barr-Tonko Bill

    March 10, 2016 – The New York Racing Association’s board of trustees on Thursday voted to support the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act, which was introduced to the U.S. House of Representatives by Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY) last July. The legislation, formally known as H.R. 3084 and backed by a group of organizations known as the Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity, would authorize an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to create uniform, high standards in drug and medication testing and enforcement for Thoroughbred horse racing.

    The Coalition issued the following statement:

    “The Coalition is thrilled to receive an endorsement from an organization that operates one of the premier racing circuits in the world and maintains an ongoing commitment to safety and integrity at Aqueduct, Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course. This medication reform movement continues to gather steam and we are hopeful other racetrack operators, racing organizations and other Thoroughbred industry organizations will follow NYRA’s example by lending their support.”

    The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015, which would authorize an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to create uniform, high standards in drug and medication testing and enforcement for Thoroughbred horse racing.
    The bill currently has more than two dozen co-sponsors, including six who have signed on since January 1, 2016; a Senate version of the bill is expected to be formally introduced in the near future.

    The Coalition’s membership includes major racing organizations, animal welfare groups, racing and wagering facilities and a grassroots organization with over 1,200 owners, trainers, breeders, and racing professionals.

    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at 
    www.horseracingintegrity.com.
  • Chenery Joins Water Hay Oats Alliance

    February 27, 2016 - The Blood Horse - Read More»
  • Breaking With History

    February 2, 2016 - The Blood Horse - Read More»
  • ‘It’s Time We Start Protecting The Sport We Love’: Gorajec Joins Water Hay Oats Alliance

    January 30, 2016 - The Paulick Report - Read More»
  • Kiaran McLaughlin: the day I realized horses don't need to run on medication

    January 29, 2016 - Thoroughbred Racing Commentary - Read More»
  • Irwin: Tennis, Track And Field Scandals Support Racing's Path Toward Independent Oversight

    January 19, 2016 - The Paulick Report - Read More»
  • Barry: In Search of a Path Forward

    January 19, 2016 - The Blood Horse Daily - Read More»
  • Analysis: Rule-Breaking Costs Other Horsemen

    January 15, 2016 - The Blood Horse - Read More»
  • Legislation would enhance equine welfare, integrity of horse racing

    January 6, 2016 - The Colorado Springs Gazette - Read More»
  • Rein in thoroughbred racing abuses

    December 10, 2015 - The Hill - Read More»
  • Burt Kinerk: Horse racing needs uniform drug regulations

    December 9, 2015 - Arizona Daily Star - Read More»
  • Commentary: Lasix Industry An Out-Of-Control Juggernaut

    November 16, 2015 - Paulick Report - Read More»
  • Owner Gural Asks Tracks to Lead on Integrity

    November 13, 2015 - The Blood Horse - Read More»
  • This patchwork system of medication policies will be U.S. racing's downfall

    November 12, 2015 - Thoroughbred Racing Commentary - Read More»
  • Open Letter on Horse Racing Integrity: Do or Die

    November 10, 2015 - The Racing Future - Read More»
  • Press Release: Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association Joins Coalition

    November 2, 2015 – The Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association announced on Monday that the organization has joined the Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity as a member and supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015 (THIA). 

    In response, the Coalition released the following statement:

    “The Coalition is pleased to have the support and membership of another national organization, especially one with the history and credibility of TOBA. TOBA has obviously taken a thoughtful, deliberate approach to the issue of clean racing and the creation of an independent oversight group through THIA.  The Coalition is eager to work with TOBA and other interested stakeholders from every corner of the horse racing industry to enhance the integrity and popularity of the sport.”

    The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015, which would authorize an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to create uniform, high standards in drug and medication testing and enforcement for Thoroughbred horse racing.

    The Coalition’s membership includes major racing organizations, animal welfare groups, racing and wagering facilities and a grassroots organization with over 1,200 owners, trainers, breeders, and racing professionals.
    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.
  • Horse racing can thrive if states agree to uniform rules

    November 1, 2015 - The Chicago Tribune - Read More»
  • Press Release: The Jockey Club of Canada Joins Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity

    October 26, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity announced today the Jockey Club of Canada (JCC) has joined as a member. The JCC is the second international racing group to join the coalition, bringing additional support from another jurisdiction which has already implemented the type of uniform, high standards for medication testing and enforcement that supporters seek to achieve in the United States. 

    “The border between Canada and the U.S. is one crossed by thousands of racehorses each year,” said Jeff Begg, Chief Steward of the Jockey Club of Canada. “The members of the Jockey Club of Canada are eager to see medication reforms in the U.S. that will provide certainty and a level playing field no matter what state or track they’re headed to.”

    The Jockey Club of Canada oversees the Thoroughbred breeding registry and graded stakes racing in Canada, and is responsible for the annual Sovereign Awards program and the Canadian Graded Stakes Committee. JCC represents Canada at the annual International Federation of Horse Racing Authorities Conference.

    The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015, which would authorize an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to create uniform, high standards in drug and medication testing and enforcement for Thoroughbred horse racing.

    The coalition’s membership includes major racing organizations, animal welfare groups, racing and wagering facilities and a grassroots organization with over 1,100 owners, trainers, breeders, and racing professionals.
    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.
  • Letter to the Editor: Gary Biszantz

    October 22, 2015 - Thoroughbred Daily News - Read More»
  • Press Release: Six More Members of the House Lend Support to Barr-Tonko Bill

    October 13, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity (CHRI) announced today that six additional members of the U.S. House of Representatives have signed on in support of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015 (THIA). They are Representatives Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Susan Brooks (R-IN), Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), David Joyce (R-OH), Jerold Nadler (D-NY), and Joe Wilson (R-SC).  

    “The growing number of co-sponsors supporting this bill is an illustration of its wide appeal, across party lines and state lines,” said Staci Hancock, co-founder of the Water Hay Oats Alliance, one of the member organizations of the CHRI. “The racing community continues to advocate for uniform standards and a level playing field for interstate horse racing through independent oversight by USADA. We are proud that this bill continues to gather support, and value the leadership each of our co-sponsors demonstrates in backing this critical legislation.”

    THIA, or H.R.3084, is the only legislative proposal with active support across a wide range of stakeholders that make up America’s horse racing community. The new co-sponsors, comprising an even split between Democrats and Republicans, represent districts from six states across the country, demonstrating the widespread support THIA continues to earn on Capitol Hill.
     
    In supporting THIA, Representatives Blumenauer, Brooks, DeLauro, Joyce, Nadler and Wilson join House co-authors Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY) as well as co-sponsors Richard Hanna (R-NY), David Jolly (R-FL), Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Elise Stefanik (R-NY), Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Ted Yoho (R-FL).

    The Coalition’s membership includes Arapahoe Park, the Breeders’ Cup Ltd., Centaur Gaming, the Consignors and Commercial Breeders Association, the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association, the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA), The Jockey Club, Keeneland Association Inc., the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders, the Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs, and the Water Hay Oats Alliance. 

    The Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015 will direct the non-governmental, non-profit U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country to create uniform, high standards in drug and medication testing and enforcement for Thoroughbred horse racing.
     
    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

  • Press Release: Keeneland Association, Inc. Joins Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity

    October 8, 2015 – Following the announcement Thursday that Keeneland Association Inc. has joined the Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity as a member and supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015, the Coalition released the following statement:

    “The addition of one of the nation’s premier Thoroughbred race tracks to the Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity is another welcome demonstration of the industry’s growing commitment to uniformity. Our shared goal is to ensure that we have a strong, credible medication oversight system that further ensures the safety of our athletes and enhances the confidence of our participants and fans.”

    The Coalition – whose membership also includes Arapahoe Park, the Breeders’ Cup Ltd., Centaur Gaming, the Consignors and Commercial Breeders Association, the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association, the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA), The Jockey Club, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders, the Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs, and the Water Hay Oats Alliance – supports H.R. 3084, also known as the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015.  

    This bill, introduced in July 2015 to the House of Representatives by Congressmen Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY), will direct the non-governmental, non-profit U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country.
     
    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

  • Press Release: International Federation of Horseracing Authorities Joins Coalition for Horse Racing

    October 8, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity announced today that the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA) has joined the Coalition, expressing its support for the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015.  

    The IFHA strives to coordinate and harmonize the rules of its 62 member countries regarding breeding, racing and wagering in a manner that ensures the quality and fairness of racing and protects the welfare of horses and jockeys.

    This bill, introduced in July 2015 to the House of Representatives by Congressmen Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY) and formally known as H.R. 3084, will direct the non-governmental, non-profit U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country.

    “Creating a uniform system for the regulation of medications in American horse racing is of critical importance,” said Louis Romanet, chairman of the IFHA. “The international horse racing community must work together if we are to achieve high standards in testing and enforcement of our equine athletes to protect their health and ensure a safe environment.
     
    “Since its creation, the IFHA has sought to protect the integrity, quality and fairness of horse racing worldwide in the interest of both the horses and the general public,” Romanet said. “We believe that the goal of this legislation is very much in line with our mission.” 

    The IFHA was founded in 1993 to promote proper regulation and best practices on international horse racing matters. The organization produces the International Agreement on Breeding, Racing and Wagering, a voluntary agreement designed for use by recognized racing and breeding authorizes, as well as statistics concerning breeding, racing and betting.

    It held its 49th annual conference on Monday, October 5 at the offices of France Galop in Paris with delegates from 52 countries and a number of racing executives and journalists in attendance.

    The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015 and its membership now includes Arapahoe Park, Breeders’ Cup Ltd., Consignors and Commercial Breeders Association, Humane Society of the United States, Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association, the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities, The Jockey Club, Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders, Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs, and the Water Hay Oats Alliance.
     
    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

  • Press Release: Arapahoe Park Joins Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity

    September 24, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity announced today that Arapahoe Park has joined as a member. The addition of the racetrack, based in Arapahoe County, Colo., follows that of tracks from New York, New Jersey and Indiana, demonstrating a steady growth of support for national oversight of uniform medication standards. 

    “Arapahoe Park is proud to stand with the Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity in its efforts to establish a higher standard of excellence for Thoroughbred racing in Colorado and throughout the country,” said Arapahoe Park Executive Director Bruce Seymore. “Its goals are the same as ours – to bring clean racing to the fans and bettors that are the lifeblood of this sport, and to create and protect jobs in the horse racing industry.”

    Arapahoe Park, which is owned and operated by Mile High Racing and Entertaining, hosts Thoroughbred, Quarter Horse, and Arabian horse racing in Aurora, Colo. 

    The Coalition – whose membership also includes the Breeders’ Cup Ltd., Centaur Gaming, the Consignors and Commercial Breeders Association, the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association, The Jockey Club, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders, the Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs, and the Water Hay Oats Alliance – supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015.  This bill, introduced in July 2015 to the House of Representatives by Congressmen Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY), will direct the non-governmental, non-profit U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country.

    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

  • Best Chance Yet

    September 21, 2015 - The Blood Horse - Read More»
  • Opinion: Mary Scollay

    September 18, 2015 - Thoroughbred Daily News - Read More»
  • Press Release: Centaur gaming joins Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity

    September 10, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity announced today that Centaur Gaming – which owns and operates Indiana-based Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, Indiana Grand Racing & Casino and several off-track betting facilities – has joined as a member. Following the addition of the Consignors and Commercial Breeders Association (CBA) earlier this week and three New York- and New Jersey-based tracks just last week, the move indicates continued momentum for national oversight of uniform medication standards in American horse racing.

    “Centaur Gaming is absolutely dedicated to bringing the highest quality and best experience possible to racing enthusiasts and bettors in Indiana and throughout the Midwest,” said Centaur Chairman & Chief Executive Officer Rod Ratcliff. “The legislation endorsed by the Coalition would not only increase fairness for the men and women who wager their hard-earned dollars on racing, but would preserve the future of a sport around which our industry is built. Centaur Gaming and the racetracks, casinos and OTB facilities we represent are proud to join the Coalition in its efforts toward the uniform regulation of medication testing and enforcement in horse racing.”

    Hoosier Park Racing & Casino has been selected by the Hambletonian Society to host the prestigious Breeders Crown championship Harness races in 2017. Pending approval by the Indiana Horse Racing Commission and Indiana Standardbred Association, the track would host the 12 year-end championship races, worth a combined $5 million.

    Indiana Grand Racing & Casino conducts Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing at its track in Shelbyville Indiana, home of the Indiana Derby and Indiana Oaks, both annual grade II races.

    The Coalition – whose membership also includes the Breeders’ Cup Ltd., the Consignors and Commercial Breeders Association, the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association, The Jockey Club, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders, the Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs, and the Water Hay Oats Alliance – supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015. This bill, introduced in July 2015 to the House of Representatives by Congressmen Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY), will direct the non-governmental, non-profit U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country.

    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

  • Press Release: Consignors & Commercial Breeders Association Joins CHRI

    September 8, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity announced today that the Consigners and Commercial Breeders Association (CBA), the trade group for buyers and sellers of racehorses in the U.S., has joined as a member. The addition of the CBA and its members to the Coalition follows closely the addition of Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs just last week – evidence of the continuing momentum for national oversight of uniform medication standards in American horse racing.

    In a statement provided to the Coalition by the CBA Board of Directors, the organization said “We support the goal of the Coalition, and the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015 - to replace the current, fragmented state-by-state regulatory system with one set of rules and penalties overseen by an independent third party, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency. While we recognize that there are still details to be decided we noted two areas of specific importance to us: The governing board must include experienced industry stakeholders and the IHA should not be opened in word or operation. These are important provisions which our members are glad to see included in the bill.”

    The CBA represents a large majority of the top 20 consignors and an overwhelming majority of breeders and consignors who sell at public auction in Kentucky to provide a constructive, unified voice related to sales issues, policies, and procedures.

    The board further explained, “Our Association’s initiatives are designed to encourage a fair and expanding marketplace for all who breed, buy, or sell thoroughbreds. We feel the implementation of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act will create an expanding marketplace by addressing an important issue in our industry. If successful, the popularity of racing will increase and our marketplace will grow.”

    The Coalition is the leading advocacy group for effectiveness and accountability in American horse racing, with the goal of implementing uniform medication testing and enforcement regulations throughout the United States’ 38 racing jurisdictions.

    The Coalition – whose membership also includes the Breeders’ Cup Ltd., the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association, The Jockey Club, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders, Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs and the Water Hay Oats Alliance – supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015. This bill, introduced in July 2015 to the House of Representatives by Congressmen Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY), will direct the non-governmental, non-profit U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country.

    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

  • Statement from CHRI regarding Horseplayers Association of North America Poll

    September 4, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity has released the following statement in response to the publication of a poll by the Horseplayers Association of North America reflecting overwhelming support among bettors for reforming drug use and enforcement in horse racing:

    “Horseplayers and bettors are the lifeblood of the Thoroughbred racing industry. The leadership of HANA clearly understands that we must ensure their voice is represented, and we praise the recent announcement of a poll of its members which concluded that more than four in five horseplayers (83%) support national uniform drug and medication standards overseen by experts at USADA, an independent, nongovernmental non-profit organization.

    These results mirror similar polling conducted among bettors in recent years by the NTRA, McKinsey & Company and Penn Schoen Berland. Most recently, a 2015 Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity survey found that:

    • 77% of horseracing bettors consider the possibility of illegal drug use when handicapping.
    • Among those who form an opinion about whether trainers are using performance enhancing drugs (PEDs), three in five (60%) say they typically bet less on the race, compared with less than one in twenty (4%) who say they bet more.
    • 92% of horseracing bettors said they want to see uniform medication policies happen faster than they are happening now, and
    • 72% support a proposal to grant oversight of drug and medication testing and enforcement to the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency.

    The support of individual horseplayers for a national framework, as well as the recently announced support of the Meadowlands, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs, epitomizes the wide variety of industry interests who are committed to the medication reform and uniformity that is needed to ensure integrity in our sport.”

    The Coalition – whose membership also includes the Breeders’ Cup Ltd., the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association, The Jockey Club, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders, Meadowlands Racetrack, Tioga Downs, Vernon Downs and the Water Hay Oats Alliance – supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015. This bill, introduced in July 2015 to the House of Representatives by Congressmen Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY), will direct the non-governmental, non-profit U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country.

    Additional information, including full 2015 polling results, stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

  • Three leading racetracks join Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity

    September 1, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity announced today that three of the leading horse racing tracks owned and operated by Jeff Gural – the Meadowlands Racetrack in East Rutherford, N.J., Tioga Downs in Nichols, N.Y. and Vernon Downs in Vernon, N.Y. – have joined as members, adding to the growing support for national oversight of uniform medication standards in American horse racing.

    “Meadowlands, Tioga Downs and Vernon Downs are all known for having the highest testing standards possible,” said Gural. “We currently do our own out of competition testing and surveillance at our expense. We have utilized the Hong Kong Jockey Club Laboratories as well as others, and despite the current efforts of the states we have been able to detect illegal performance enhancing medication in horses entered at our facilities. We believe that national oversight is the only way to ensure that everyone is playing fairly and that our animals are not subject to potentially harmful medications. Our tracks are proud to join the Coalition and we hope that our participation will help broaden these positive reforms to encompass Standardbred horseracing. The implementation of uniform policies throughout the U.S. and an industry-based, non-governmental solution will only help us grow the popularity and credibility of the sport and ultimately establish a level playing field across the board.”

    The Coalition has already played an integral role in advocating for effectiveness and accountability reviews to ensure that uniform medication testing and enforcement regulations are successfully implemented throughout the United States’ 38 racing jurisdictions.

    Jeff Gural is the CEO of American Racing and Entertainment, LLC and chairman of commercial real estate firm Newmark Grubb Knight Frank. He is a longtime proponent of medication reform and enhanced drug testing in American horse racing.

    The Coalition – whose membership also includes the Breeders’ Cup Ltd., the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association, The Jockey Club, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders, and the Water Hay Oats Alliance – supports the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015. This bill, introduced in July 2015 to the House of Representatives by Congressmen Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY), will direct the non-governmental, non-profit U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country.

  • Barr-Tonko Bill Delivers What Thoroughbred Industry Wants, Needs

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  • Press Release: Coalition for Horseracing Integrity Welcomes Six New Congressional Supporters

    July 24, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity would like to thank Representatives Richard Hanna (R-NY), David Jolly (R-FL), Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Elise Stefanik (R-NY), Louise Slaughter (D-NY) and Ted Yoho (R-FL) for signing on in support of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015. We are pleased to see growing momentum on Capitol Hill in favor of reforms in the regulation of this job-creating industry. This bill, known in the U.S. House as H.R.3084, is the only legislative proposal with active support of the diverse stakeholders that make up the horseracing community. We thank Congressmen Andy Barr (R-KY) and Paul Tonko (D-NY) for their continued efforts to bring uniformity and a level playing field to interstate horse racing.

  • Editorial Board "Welcome Anti-Doping Bill for Horse Racing"

    July 20, 2015 - Lexington Herald-Leader - Read More»

  • CHRI Applauds introduction of bipartisan “Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act"

    July 16, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity announced today its support of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act of 2015, a new bipartisan bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congressmen Andy Barr (R-Ky.) and Paul Tonko (D-N.Y.). This legislation will grant authority for rulemaking, testing and enforcement of drug and medication use in Thoroughbred racing to an entity created by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA).

    The Coalition represents a diverse group of horse racing and animal welfare organizations including The Jockey Club, Breeders’ Cup Ltd., the Water Hay Oats Alliance, the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association, the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and the Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders.

    “The Coalition thanks Representatives Barr and Tonko for issuing this common sense legislation,” said Craig Fravel, president and chief executive officer of the Breeders’ Cup Ltd. “It is immensely gratifying to see the results of earnest collaboration among such a broad range of stakeholders. This bill is designed to bring long-needed reforms to the medication rules in Thoroughbred racing and provide a new level of certainty and trust for our participants and fans. We applaud these members of Congress for their foresight in regard to the future of an industry that contributes billions of dollars and generates hundreds of thousands of jobs to the American economy.”

    The horse racing industry has been working to advance better rules pertaining to drugs, drug testing and penalties through the National Uniform Medication Program (NUMP) on a state-by-state basis, and while progress has been made, there still remain significant inconsistencies in standards and enforcement in the 38 states that permit pari-mutuel wagering. 

    "The horse racing industry needs a makeover, and this bill has the potential to deliver a new regulatory framework with a science-based program and provide better protection for all of the athletes involved," said Wayne Pacelle, president and chief executive officer of the Humane Society of the United States. "We are grateful to Representatives Barr and Tonko for wading into this debate, and we hope that they can find common ground with other lawmakers interested in racing reform to get a good, comprehensive bill over the finish line."

    As a non-profit, nongovernmental organization, USADA would create the Thoroughbred Horse Anti-Doping Authority (THADA), to be governed by a board of six USADA board members and five independent individuals from the Thoroughbred racing industry. This body would work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country, funded entirely by industry at no cost to taxpayers. Among the provisions in the proposed legislation, THADA would develop and administer a nationwide anti-doping program that would go into effect beginning January 1, 2017, following input from the Thoroughbred industry and the public.

    With its proven ability to protect the integrity of competition from athletes who use performance-enhancing drugs, such as the Olympics and Tour de France, USADA is uniquely equipped to provide independent oversight in setting uniform medication standards for Thoroughbred racing. 

    Recent studies show widespread support for legislation that would enable USADA to provide uniform drug and medication regulation. Five in six likely voters nationally (85%) support such reform, including 81% of Republicans, 86% of Democrats, and 87% of independent voters, according to a national survey conducted by Penn Schoen Berland. Wagering is the economic lifeblood of the sport, and this poll also showed such reform is supported by more than seven in 10 horse racing bettors.

    Millions of people participate annually in American Thoroughbred racing as owners, trainers, veterinarians, and industry support professionals, and as fans and bettors. The industry contributes $25 billion to the U.S. economy annually and generates 380,000 domestic jobs, with 38 states participating in pari-mutuel racing and American Thoroughbreds traveling and racing overseas in Europe and on growing racing circuits in Asia and the Middle East.

  • Hal Handel Op-Ed "Time for Change is Now"

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  • Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders Join CHRI


    June 24, 2015 - The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity is pleased to announce today that the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders (KTA/KTOB) have joined as members, adding to the wave of support for national oversight of uniform medication standards in Thoroughbred racing. The Coalition’s membership also includes The Jockey Club, the Water Hay Oats Alliance, Breeders’ Cup, the Humane Society of the United States, and the Humane Society Veterinary Medicine Association.

    “The Thoroughbred horse breeding and racing industry is a major part of Kentucky’s  economy and rich history, and we believe consistent medication administration and enforcement regulations are necessary to preserve this tradition,” said Chauncey Morris, executive director of KTA. “Our directors appreciate the fact that the Coalition and its legislative partners have considered our input and will ensure that industry oversight is tough, fair, and accountable for implementing an effective and efficient anti-doping program, and they voted unanimously on June 17 to support the legislation. The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity has produced the best solution yet for a path forward for this great American sport.”

    The Coalition supports legislation that will direct the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to create an independent, Thoroughbred racing-specific, non-governmental and non-profit organization to work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country. KTA/KTOB has already played an integral role in advocating for effectiveness and accountability reviews to ensure that these reforms are successfully implemented, as well as in encouraging further industry collaboration on costs, violations, and penalties.

     “We are immensely proud to welcome the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association into our ranks,” said James L. Gagliano, president and chief operating officer of The Jockey Club. “The growth of the Coalition points to the importance of our goal – modernizing horse racing’s drug and medication regulations to provide certainty and safety for our participants and fans.”

    The Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders are a horseman’s group and trade association representing the Thoroughbred breeding and racing industry in Kentucky. Kentucky is the biggest producer of Thoroughbred foals in the world, responsible for 34 percent of the U.S. foal crop, the largest concentration of stallions, veterinary practices and breeding farms, and is home to the leading yearling and breeding stock sales, premier race meetings at Keeneland and the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, and year-round racing at Turfway Park, Ellis Park and Kentucky Downs.

    Millions of people participate annually in American Thoroughbred racing as owners, trainers, veterinarians, and industry support professionals, and as fans and bettors. The industry contributes $25 billion to the U.S. economy annually and generates 380,000 domestic jobs, with 38 states participating in pari-mutuel racing.

    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com

  • Veterinarian Group Joins Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity

    June 23, 2015 – The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity has announced that the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association (HSVMA) will join the Coalition in its advocacy efforts to protect the health and well-being of Thoroughbred racehorses.  Alongside Coalition members like The Jockey Club, the Water Hay Oats Alliance, Breeders’ Cup, and the Humane Society of the United States, the HSVMA has affirmed its support for national oversight of uniform medication standards. 

    “It is time to rein in the excessive use of racehorse medication and finally modernize the state-by-state patchwork regulatory system in place today,” said Barry Kellogg, VMD, senior veterinary advisor for HSVMA. “With a uniform standards, testing and oversight, veterinarians who devote their careers to the welfare and humane care of racehorses can be confident that the system will work in the best interest of the animals.”

    The Coalition will work with Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY) and other lawmakers to bring long-needed reforms to medication administration, testing and enforcement in competitive horse racing.  It is the first group to draw the active support of the horse racing industry’s diverse membership – a distinction largely earned in response to its commitment to the health and well-being of Thoroughbred horses. 

    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com.

  • Lift doping shadow: Support national drug standards to stem racing's decline

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  • 'Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity’ Formed to Advocate for Uniform Drug Testing and Enforcement

    May 29, 2015 – A diverse group of horse racing and animal welfare organizations today announced the launch of a coalition to support uniform medication standards for Thoroughbred racing and the formal introduction of proposed legislation that would grant independent authority over rule-making, testing and enforcement oversight to an entity created by the U.S. Anti Doping Agency (USADA).

    The groups will work with Congressman Paul Tonko (D-NY) and other lawmakers to file common-sense legislation to bring long-needed reforms to horse racing.

    The Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity (www.horseracingintegrity.com) is comprised of two major Thoroughbred racing organizations (Breeders’ Cup Ltd. and The Jockey Club), an animal welfare group (The Humane Society of the United States), with grassroots support from the more than 1,000 members of the Water Hay Oats Alliance.

    The House bill will be known as the Thoroughbred Horse Racing Anti-Doping Act of 2015.

    The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency administers the anti-doping programs – including education, sample collection, results management and drug reference resources – for athletes in U.S. Olympic, Paralympic, Pan American and Parapan American Sport, including all Olympic sport national governing bodies, their athletes and events throughout the year.

    “It is USADA’s hope that the model of independence and national harmonization envisioned through this legislation can be realized for the long term good of this sport,” said USADA CEO Travis T. Tygart. “As we have done with other sports, USADA would be focused on creating a robust program that can protect the rights of competitors and the integrity of competition.”

    “In a sport built on the integrity of competition, nothing is more important than a level playing field for the horses, jockeys, trainers, owners that compete and for the fans who wager on our sport,” said Arthur Hancock III, co-founder of the grassroots organization WHOA. “The creation of this coalition now provides all interested parties with a unique opportunity to support a single, national approach to medication, drug testing and penalties with strong, independent oversight and enforcement."

    “It is time for key stakeholders to come together and find solutions to protect equine athletes on the track and to turn around the problem of widespread doping of horses to enhance performance and to get injured horses into the starting gate,” said Wayne Pacelle, president and chief executive officer of The Humane Society of the United States. “The number of breakdowns in American racing should be unacceptable to any person concerned about the welfare of horses.”

    Among the provisions in the proposed legislation by U.S. Representative Paul Tonko (D-NY), USADA would create the Thoroughbred Horseracing Anti-Doping Organization (THADO), an independent, non governmental non-profit governed by a board comprised of six USADA board members and five independent individuals from the Thoroughbred racing industry. This organization would work collaboratively with state racing commissions and their respective staff members throughout the country.

    THADO would develop and administer a nationwide anti-doping program that would go into effect beginning January 1, 2017, following input from the Thoroughbred industry and the public.

    The horse racing industry has been working to advance better rules pertaining to drugs, drug testing and penalties through National Uniform Medication Program (NUMP) on a state-by-state basis.

    "The racing industry has taken thoughtful and significant steps toward medication reform in recent years and we believe that the creation of this coalition demonstrates widespread support for further changes, changes that can be made in a more timely fashion,” said James L. Gagliano, president and chief operating officer of The Jockey Club. “We deeply appreciate Congressmen Tonko’s willingness to help us bring about reform.”

    The Coalition also credited the efforts of Congressmen Ed Whitfield (R-KY) and Joe Pitts (R-PA) and Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) who have been on the forefront of efforts to reform the current medication system.

    “Without the leadership of Congressmen Whitfield, Congressmen Pitts and Senator Udall, the industry may not have taken this problem head on,” said Gagliano. “This new coalition wants to bring all lawmakers interested in racing reform together and find a common solution that will further ensure the safety of our athletes and the integrity of our sport for our participants and our fans.”

    “The current system of state-by-state regulation of medication across 38 states has inherent inefficiencies and a newer, modern and efficient approach is vital to the growth of our sport,” said Craig Fravel, president and chief executive officer of Breeders’ Cup Ltd. “We are pleased to partner in support of this legislation and we look forward to adding more coalition members in the weeks and months to come.”

    Millions of people participate annually in American Thoroughbred racing as owners, trainers, veterinarians and industry support professionals, and as fans and bettors. The industry contributes $25 billion to the U.S. economy annually and generates 380,000 domestic jobs, with 38 states participating in pari-mutuel racing and American thoroughbreds traveling and racing overseas in Europe and on growing racing circuits in Asia and the Middle East.

    Additional information, including stories from supporters and ways to contact Congressional members to express support for this legislation, is available at www.horseracingintegrity.com

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  • Latest video

    See our latest event with the Congressional Horse Caucus and learn more about medication reform now!

    See the introduction of the Thoroughbred Horseracing Integrity Act (H.R. 3084) in Washington, D.C.

    U.S. Reps looking for uniform drug standards in horse racing.