The New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (NYTHA) today announced its commitment to acquire state-of-the-art testing equipment for the New York Equine Drug Testing and Research Program at Morrisville State College. The new equipment, a triple quadrupole mass spectrometer, will be used to screen for new drugs that are alleged to be used in horse racing, including synthetic marijuana; nootropics, which enhance mental function; and modified existing drugs and peptides. It will provide New York’s Equine Drug Testing Program with the increased sensitivity needed to test for these compounds in blood, urine and hair samples.
NYTHA will cover the entire cost of the equipment, approximately $450,000.
Over the last seven years, NYTHA has contributed more than $1 million to enhance New York’s Equine Drug Testing Program. In 2008, NYTHA put up $500,000 to acquire the equipment to test for anabolic steroids. The organization donated $100,000 to the New York Equine Drug Testing and Research Program in 2012 to advance research to strengthen testing for illegal medications such as gene- and blood-doping substances, as well as snake toxins and protein-based drugs.
“As we’ve demonstrated in the past, NYTHA is staunchly committed to ensuring a level playing field for New York’s owners and trainers,” said NYTHA President Rick Violette Jr. “We don’t know that these ‘designer’ drugs are being used in Thoroughbred racing, but we need to be sure that our drug testing program has the tools it needs to combat any efforts to cheat. This new equipment will help to do just that.”