07/01/2013 10:05AM

Japan, Ireland racing officials to present at The Jockey Club's Round Table


Two top representatives of racing organizations in Japan and Ireland are scheduled to deliver the “featured presentations” at this year’s Jockey Club Round Table on Matters Pertaining to Racing on Aug. 11 in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., according to The Jockey Club.

Masayuki Goto, an executive director with the Japan Racing Association, and Brian Kavanagh, the chief executive of Horse Racing Ireland, have been asked by The Jockey Club to “share their insights on policies, initiatives, and business operations of their respective associations, as well as their perspectives on Thoroughbred racing in North America,” The Jockey Club said in a release.

The JRA is the administrative body for all racing in Japan, where racing is tightly regulated by the government. Although less powerful than the JRA, Horse Racing Ireland performs similar functions and, like the JRA, is funded by the country’s government.

Goto and Kavanagh will be the first keynote speakers from foreign countries at the Round Table since 2009, when Louis Romanet, the chairman of the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities, delivered an address chastising North American racing jurisdictions for rules that allow for the race-day administration of the anti-bleeding medication furosemide, a diuretic.

Following Romanet’s address, The Jockey Club began openly pushing for a ban on the race-day use of furosemide, which is commonly referred to as Lasix. The effort has been largely unsuccessful due to pushback from horsemen’s organizations, though some state racing commissions over the past several years have tightened regulations on how furosemide is administered on race day.

The race-day administration of furosemide is banned in most countries outside of North America, including in Japan and Ireland.

Last year, the Round Table’s keynote speaker was Travis Tygart, the CEO of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, the company that coordinates drug-testing for U.S. Olympic athletes.

The Round Table is an annual event administered by The Jockey Club. The topics of discussion at the Round Table typically telegraph The Jockey Club’s position on issues affecting racing.