06/06/2014 4:17PM

Horses in Belmont's biggest races all pass drug tests

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The horses entered in the four races at Belmont Park on Saturday with purses of $1 million or more, including the Belmont Stakes, all tested negative for illegal substances in pre-race out-of-competition tests, according to Dr. Scott Palmer, the equine medical director of the New York Gaming Commission.

Samples were pulled from the horses over the past week for the purposes of the tests, which look for long-acting drugs such as erythropoietin and other blood dopers, along with illegal peptides and painkilling toxins. The tests were performed at the laboratory at Morrisville State College used by the gambling commission for its regular testing.

The gambling commission announced two weeks ago that all the horses entered in the four $1 million or more stakes on Saturday would be subject to out-of-competition testing and other ramped-up security protocols, including 24-hour monitoring of their stalls beginning on Wednesday.

The four stakes on Saturday with purses of $1 million or more are the Belmont Stakes, the Manhattan, the Met Mile, and the Ogden Phipps. All are Grade 1 races.