07/21/2009 1:53PM

Medication: RSVP/ Part 6


I swear we're going to get back to playing some races and discussing what else is wrong with the game any day now, but for now you've hit the century mark on medication comments again so please continue talking among yourselves in the comment section of this post.

Convene More than 1 year ago
One addition to my post ... I think the thing that bothers me about the environmental (sic) contamination issue is that it seems to happen so often to the same trainers! Don't all the other trainers frequent the same places/facilities? I think past performance has to count in racing commission decisions. eg If Allan Jerkens had a teeny tiny positive, yeah it's probably environmental. Ditto Larry Jones, who's only had ONE positive in 25 years of training! Mr. Asmussen has some history however, and unfortunately that has to influence at least MY perceptions as to whether or not he was trying to slip something through a little close to withdrawal time. I also think racing jurisdictions should supply all samples requested; the racing "justice system" needs to be as transparent and unbiased as possible if their rulings are to remain credible.
Convene More than 1 year ago
Back in the day, we raced on hay, oats and water. Look at the greats who did it! Ruffian, Damascus, Susan's Girl, Tim Tam, Citation ... you get the point. They started MANY times in their careers. One day we heard that Bute (and then Lasix) had become legal raceday meds and we all said, "Now we watch the breakdowns start!" Now isn't that the reason we're here, commenting on this blog? Some physiology/pharmacology basics: in addition to anti-inflammatory actions, Bute disrupts blood clotting mechanisms, turning normal minor lung bleeds common to all horses into big ones we can see - and see the effects of. So we drop the ol' blood pressure with Lasix but along with the huge amounts of water (needed for cooling!) out go minerals and electrolytes. Electrolytes are needed for muscle activity (via neuron activity). One mineral, calcium, goes out too resulting in low blood calcium. Now - when blood calcium drops, the body takes it from elsewhere. Bones are HUGE calcium reservoirs. Guess where the shortfall comes from to raise blood levels! And we wonder why so many fractures occur???? Oldtimers (like Frank Whiteley) used to hose legs instead of using Bute. Stables now include hundreds of horses, making hosing impossible. But the basic thing is that Bute leads to Lasix leads to calcium-depleted bones - which leads to breakdowns. I think the answer about meds, regardless of the public's opinion (which I'm not discounting; I'm just putting the horses first), is a no-brainer. Get rid of them. If the horse needs meds on raceday, maybe he's not sound enough to race at this time.
donald altemose More than 1 year ago
My thought is that I have a hard time with the consistency of high % trainers who seem to be at the forefront of the medication misuse issue. Enough is enough. If Mr. Trainer, Allen Jerkens can operate without illegal meds then those who can't ought to step back, take a moment or two and learn from him. But I do wonder, if most people think that the med issue is keeping people from the track---how come so many oulets keep popping up? Seeing the crowd at Saratoga today and hearing the enthusiasm at my local OTB I had a warm feeling about the game. Large competitive fields---that's the issue. Too many race tracks at this point in time and way too many million dollar preps prior to the ky derby which leads to short fields. Other than my expressed thoughts I really have no medication answers.
9racer9 More than 1 year ago
Let's race.
9racer9 More than 1 year ago
They tell me that most owners say. If you do not have some positives over the years ,your not trying hard enough. Trainers that do this get more and more horses. Only if they win and get positives. Check it out,fines not time for most large stables ,the beat goes on. Small guys with no friends or owners that are judges or attorneys have to bite the bullet. Check out all of the cocaine positives in CALIFORNIA some years ago. What happened? We love this business,the horses,etc.We must have uniform levels on theraputic meds;diagnostic meds,and race day meds. What can we do? Give us some realistic answers...
Theo L. Hozer to Tom D. More than 1 year ago
“I would love to see t-bred racing in the US achieve the popularity that it has in Hong Kong. It can happen and would not be that difficult to achieve.” DUH? For Tom D. comes the following, dated last week: HONG KONG — The 124-year-old Hong Kong Jockey Club is facing a decidedly modern threat: glitzy casinos being built by Las Vegas operators in nearby Macau. The new competitors are draining away at least $2.4 billion a year in potential betting revenue, or about 20 percent of last year's take, estimates the club's Chief Executive Officer, who added. "If you look at the expansion of gaming opportunities and venues in Macau, which have only just started, it's serious money." … WHICH HAVE ONLY JUST STARTED!! As for the rest of you who have repeated ad nausea this theme of “let’s copy the Euros” … who believe everything over there is peaches and crème and that ours is the only sport in trouble … and, worse, who believe the Euros are so evolved and we’re so archaic and behind the times … tell me if this passage from that same article doesn’t sound familiar, only 50 YEARS BEHIND OUR SPORT: "Horse racing is a sport. It's a sport where people can use their brains," says Tony Chen, 46. Like many of the Chinese packing the four-tier stands that night, Chen had been studiously scanning his racing forms, circling numbers and crossing out names. But it's all too complicated for people like 25-year-old Michael Lee, which is why he was at the ferry pier, headed for the Casinos. "You need to study the background of the horses before placing a bet. It's so time-consuming and troublesome," he said. "All I need to do is jump on the ferry, then I can go to different casinos and gamble in Macau. ... poker, blackjack, baccarat -- you name it," he said. To restate, if this 600 comment exercise has proven anything it’s this: If the rest of the free world was as ill-informed as the average American horse racing fan, Google’s stock would be $4.00 a share!
Christopherlally More than 1 year ago
How about we consider the Singapore Dope Slap Solution...four or five good swats with the cane, a hefty fine, community service like walking hots and mucking stalls for rescue horses then deportation to the offenders home state for a nice stay-cation.
buzznott More than 1 year ago
So, correct me if I'm wrong. The betting public doesn't want or need the DRF to publish the big "L" for Lasix, or the big "B" for Bute in the PP's. I would suggest to Steve that the DRF save space in the form by removing the "drug info" permanently.
TR More than 1 year ago
I just inadvertently realized a coincidence of doping. I just read Brad Free's Tweet about a horse breaking down at Del Mar, and after initially thinking, "Gee, that's too bad." I then snidely thought to myself, "I bet I can guess who the trainer is.". It's almost like when reading that a baseball player has 35 home runs before the All-Star Break, we are now conditioned to the suspicious of them using performance enhancing drugs.
Winston707 More than 1 year ago
Lasix was the beginnig of the end and the end is getting closer. All horses aren,t bleeders but all are on Lasix...