By: Edited Press Release

The newest version of model rules approved by the Association of Racing Commissioners International (ARCI) is now available at

The ARCI’s model rules are designed to provide the template for racing regulatory entities and the framework under which the sport has made significant gains toward uniform regulations among jurisdictions.

The standards were reviewed and modified at the ARCI’s equine welfare and racing integrity conference in April. The biggest changes involve tougher standards and protocol for the official veterinarian’s list, which places restrictions on horses deemed unable to race because of illness, unsoundness, or infirmity.

The model rules strengthen the provision where horses cannot race anywhere else if on a veterinarian’s list in one jurisdiction until they are released by that state’s official veterinarian, unless there is an unforeseen administrative issue in gaining the release. It also places a minimum of seven days that a horse scratched or excused from a race be on the list.

The updated model rules also specify that horses that haven’t raced in a year or longer, as well horses making their first career start at age 4 or older, must work a half-mile in at least 52 seconds (220 yards in 13.3 seconds for Quarter Horses) and submit blood or another biological sample to test for any drugs or medications that might mask a physical problem before being allowed to compete.

Out-of-competition testing regulations and protocols were added for Standardbred racing to mirror those for Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing.

A separate policy governing the use of the bronchodilator clenbuterol was approved for Quarter Horses. That recommended rule now makes any detection of clenbuterol in a post-race sample taken from a Quarter Horse a violation. The policy also applies to all horses in a mixed breed contest if Quarter Horses participate. Any finding of clenbuterol, in competition or out,,will trigger six months on the veterinarian’s list under the revised model policy for Quarter Horses.

The ARCI also updated its uniform classification document based upon a periodic review done by the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium.

The following ARCI resources are available online: