04/17/2006 12:00AM

Kentucky advises on drug


The Kentucky Horse Racing Authority unanimously approved on Monday an advisory to horsemen stating that the painkiller naproxen should not be administered within 120 hours of a race.

Naproxen, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, is among a class of painkillers in Kentucky that cannot be administered within 48 hours of a race. The authority approved the advisory after drug-testing officials warned regulators that testing for the drug can be "problematic," because traces of the drug can accumulate in tissue and lead to positive tests even if administered outside the 48-hour window.

Earlier this year, the authority rescinded penalties against two trainers whose horses tested positive for the drug. The trainers said that they had administered naproxen outside of the 48-hour limit.

Also on Monday, the authority approved a roster of racing officials submitted by Churchill Downs for its spring meet. The roster included Churchill's new head starter, Scott Jordan, who was hired at the beginning of April after serving as the top assistant starter since 2002.

Jim Gallagher, the executive director of the racing authority, said that an anonymous person had sent letters to several state racing officials, including himself, contending that Jordan should not be allowed be head starter because of freelance gate work he did for several Churchill trainers. The authority approved Jordan on the condition that he refrain from doing outside work for trainers.