The New Out-Of-Competition Testing Rule: What You Need to Know: THA Racing.Com 1/15/17

By: Alan Foreman

During the coming months, racing jurisdictions throughout the country will be modifying or adopting the new out-of-competition testing rule that was adopted by the Association of Racing Commissioners International Dec. 9, 2016. The new rule was the product of an extensive collaborative effort by industry organizations, regulators, regulatory attorneys and the scientific community to identify the substances that need to be prohibited or regulated for horses in training and to implement comprehensive procedures to ensure that the rule is effective and legally enforceable.

Under the current model rule, the only substances prohibited in out-of-competition testing are blood- and gene-doping agents such as EPO, and protein and peptide-based drugs. The new rule expands the list of prohibited substances in training to mirror the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Prohibited List—including anabolic steroids—and gives to horsemen and veterinarians a comprehensive list of prohibited substances.

For a limited number of prohibited substances that have some identified therapeutic purpose, strict reporting and racing restrictions are provided. Additionally, the new rule provides clear procedures for the uniform regulation and enforcement of the rule.

The THA has been a strong proponent of the new expanded rule. We believe it should become the fifth prong of the National Uniform Medication Program and intend to support its swift enactment in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern regions.

Here is important information about the new rule that you need to know:

A racing commission can collect an out-of-competition sample for cause or within the discretion of a commission, at any reasonable time and without advance notice, and where the horse from whom the sample is sought is located, whether on or off racetrack property.

Owners and trainers, as a condition of licensing, shall be deemed to have consented to access to the premises where the horse is located for purposes of an out-of-competition test. Consent is granted solely for purposes of collecting the out-of-competition samples from the horse, and no other search is permitted.

A horse is eligible to be out-of-competition tested if:

  • It is on the grounds of a racetrack or training center;
  • It is under the care of a licensed trainer and owned by a licensed owner;
  • It is entered or nominated to race;
  • It has raced within the previous 12 months;
  • It is nominated to a state breeders’ fund or sire stakes program

A racing commission can permit the trainer or owner of a horse not located on racetrack property to present the horse for testing at a time and location agreed to by the commission.

A racing commission can request and arrange for the testing of an out-of-state horse by the racing commission in the jurisdiction where the horse is located. The same rules and procedures apply.

An owner and trainer, and their personnel and agents, must fully cooperate in the collection of the samples. Refusal to cooperate or willfully deceptive acts or interference in sampling will result in a minimum license suspension of one year and placement of the horse on the stewards’ list for six months.

If an owner or trainer assert that the horse is no longer in training and the horse is therefore not sampled, the horse will be placed on the stewards’ list for six months, unless the owner or trainer voluntarily submit the horse for sampling when requested.

The samples will be screened for the presence of substances on the out-of-competition testing Prohibited List. The presence and confirmation of a substance on the Prohibited List is a rules violation and subjects the offending trainer and owner to the penalties prescribed for racing medication violations and the points under the Multiple Medication Violation Penalty System.

The collection of samples will be performed by a commission designee and according to strict regulatory protocols. Chain-of-custody procedures apply. Split and referee sample rules will apply.

PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING SPECIAL REQUIREMENTS FOR SUBSTANCES ON THE PROHIBITED LIST:

If the selected horse has been treated with furosemide (also called Lasix or Salix) a veterinarian’s prescription and treatment plan must be provided.

If a horse subject to out-of-competition testing needs to be treated with the anabolic steroids boldenone, nandrolone, stanozolol and testosterone, such treatment must be reported to the commission, prescribed by a veterinarian, a treatment plan must be provided at the time of sampling, and the horse must be placed on the vet’s list for six months.

If the selected horse has been treated with albuterol, a veterinarian’s prescription must be provided.

If the selected horse has been treated with clenbuterol, a veterinarian’s prescription and treatment plan must be provided.

If the selected horse has been treated with Autologous Conditioned Plasma (IRAP) or Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP), the treatment must be reported at the time of sampling and a veterinarian’s prescription must be provided.

If the selected horse has been treated with an Adrenocorticotropic Hormone (ACTH), a veterinarian’s prescription and treatment plan must be provided.

If the selected horse has been treated with a Luteinizing Hormone, such treatment must be reported to the commission, a veterinarian’s prescription and treatment plan must be provided, the trainer must receive written approval from the commission, and the horse must be placed on the vet’s list for 60 days.

If the selected horse has been treated with Chorionic Gonadotropin, such treatment must be reported to the commission, a veterinarian’s prescription and treatment plan must be provided, the trainer must receive written approval from the commission, and the horse must be placed on the vet’s list for 60 days.

If the selected horse has been treated with Mesenchymal Stem Cells, such treatment must be reported to the commission, must be reported at the time of sampling, and a veterinarian’s prescription must be provided.

If a horse (fillies and mares) has been treated with Altrenogest, a veterinarian’s prescription must be provided at the time of sampling.

If a horse has been treated with blood replacements, an Emergency Use Report must be filed with the commission, the treatment must be reported at the time of sampling, and a veterinarian’s prescription must be provided.

If a horse has been treated with Nucleic Polymer Transfers, such treatment must be reported to the commission, a veterinarian’s prescription and treatment plan must be provided, and the trainer must receive written approval from the commission.

If a horse has been treated with thyroxine, such treatment must be reported to the commission, a veterinarian’s prescription and treatment plan must be provided, and the trainer must receive written approval from the commission.

If a horse has been treated with SO (not FDA-approved) the treatment must be prescribed by a veterinarian and approved in writing by the commission.

If a horse has been treated with trichlormethiazide, the treatment must be prescribed by a veterinarian and reported at the time of sampling.

If a horse has been treated with any diuretic other than furosemide, the treatment must be prescribed by a veterinarian, reported at the time of sampling, and an Emergency Use Report filed with the commission.

The complete out-of-competition testing rule can be viewed here. The Prohibited List and Required Conditions for Restricted Therapeutic Use chart are available here.

If you have any questions about the new rule or compliance with the Prohibited List, contact your racing commission or equine medical director. You can also call Racing Medication and Testing Consortium Executive Director Dr. Dionne Benson at (859) 224 2844.