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Lasix to be allowed in all 2014 Breeders' Cup races
By Matt Hegarty
All horses running in the 2014 Breeders’ Cup races at Santa Anita will be allowed to be administered the anti-bleeding medication furosemide on race day, Breeders’ Cup confirmed in a statement Friday, in a rollback of an experimental policy that had divided the racing industry.
Breeders’ Cup officials provided the statement a day after a discussion about the Breeders’ Cup’s furosemide policy at a meeting of the California Horse Racing Board. Following the meeting, it was briefly reported by Daily Racing Form and other publications that a policy currently in place banning the raceday administration of the drug in this year’s 2-year-old races would not be in place for the 2014 event, scheduled to be run at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif. This year’s event also is scheduled for Santa Anita.
In the statement, Breeders’ Cup Ltd. officials said that while evaluating host sites for the 2014 event “it became apparent that the raceday medication policy for 2014 would have to be consistent with rules in effect in any eligible host jurisdiction at the time of the event” and that horsemen in California and elsewhere had said they would withhold approval for the simulcasting of the event if Breeders’ Cup continued to restrict the raceday use of the drug.
“To date, no racing jurisdiction in the U.S. has established a policy eliminating the use of all raceday medications, and none of our potential future host sites has been able to offer assurances that such an eventuality is likely in the near term,” the Breeders’ Cup statement read.
Furosemide, which also is known by the trade name Lasix, is legal to be administered on race day in every racing jurisdiction in North America, including California.
Horsemen in the United States have rejected calls to ban the raceday use of the drug, despite aggressive lobbying by many national racing organizations, mostly those representing prominent breeders or owners with international racing operations. Horsemen have defended the raceday administration of the drug as an effective way to mitigate bleeding in the lungs, despite a ban on the raceday use of furosemide in most of the world’s other major racing jurisdictions.
Breeders’ Cup first passed a policy to restrict the raceday use of furosemide for 2-year-olds participating in the 2012 event. The policy was supposed to be extended to all of the races for the 2013 event, but, in a vote that upset several members of the board, the Breeders’ Cup earlier this year suspended the broadening of the policy, again limiting the restriction to 2-year-olds.
In the statement, Breeders’ Cup said it “remains committed” to working toward running its races with a prohibition on raceday medication.
During the 2012 event, field size in the five 2-year-old races dropped an average of 21.6 percent. Handle on the races plummeted 23 percent.
Though it is unclear how much of an impact the furosemide ban had on handle for the 2-year-old races, Breeders’ Cup officials had expressed concern that a wider ban on the raceday use of the drug could have serious financial impacts on the organization because of the possibility of significant declines in handle.
This comes as no surprise. No one, absolutely no one in horse racing has any backbone to enforce rules that stick. They all, and I mean all succumb to pressure. No wonder the sport is dying. Yes, horse racing is a dying sport. And I've been involved for 38 years. What is wrong with a horse running free of all kinds of drugs in its system. But that's the environment we live in. There's a drug for everything. You read about all these meetings to discuss drugs in the sport. Ha! They are all fooling themselves. I say let every trainer use whatever can him/her an advantage. Snake venom will become the norm.
Just goes to the incompetence there, NEVER should have banned it in the first place. It is precautionary in an endeavor where a horse is being asked to work. What is wrong with that? Bring, or beg, Satish Satan to come back and clean house. These fools set the BC at the SA bowing alley AGAIN. Can you say boycott? Like Yonkers, 1st to the turn wins. Yaaah.
Nice to see the California cowards rule the roost in what used to be racing's crowning achievement.
hey, breeders cup committee. who are the breeders cup multiple winners ? goldikova, zenyatta, tiznow, ouija board, bayakoa, miesque, lure, da hoss, midnight lute, high chaparral, conduit and royal delta. these are the star horses of breeders cup history. nine out of the 12 horses did not use lasix at the age of two. royal delta and midnight lute only used lasix once during their two year old season. da hoss used it 3 times. i guess the chrb and breeder cup committees dont want to see super star horses.
one more nail...hammer hammer.
And the beat goes on as does the slow steady downfall of this sport.
This is the greatest racing news I've heard in a long time. We (those on the East Coast and Kentucky ) were being dictated to and are treated like 2nd class citizens by the BC committee. I was all for Repole's idea of running our own BC in NY the same day. We should demand NY gets the same amount of BC days as Santa Anita . We run all year and we fight cold & snow. Soon, even with perfect weather the west Coast won't be able to say that and I do feel sorry on Hollywood's closing . Now bring the BC back to NY so we can show them how to run ; rain or shine.
It should be gong the other way - Lasix should be banned - bleeders should not run - healthy sound horses should be promoted, not sale topers that run fast for short distances and then bleed or get injured....
I think you can thank the California horsepeople for this one: This to me shows simply put, there are some trainers who either don't know how to train and race horses without Lasix or simply don't want to have their horses race without it. This can be rendered moot if owners agreed on their own that their horses NOT race with Lasix. What is really needed is a five-year phaseout of Lasix starting with the top events like the Triple Crown, Breeders' Cup and other select Grade 1 events AND ALL races for two year olds, slowly expanding to ALL Grade 1 & 2 events and races for three year olds before the Belmont Stakes and evenually ALL races. What also is needed is for the sport to both follow and expand on the rules now in place in Harness Racing that for Standardbreds now require those horses to race through at least their four year old season as originally implemented by Jeff Gural for races at the tracks he owns (The Meadowlands, Vernon Downs and Tioga Downs) and is also followed by Woodbine Entertain Group for major Harness stakes at Woodbine and Mohawk Raceway. That has already led to its desired effect in its first year as virtually every top three year old from last year returned for their four year old season. For thoroughbreds, I would expand on this and make it so top horses have to race through their five year old season. What the latter case would do is force changes in the way horses are bred if breeders' realized that horses would have to hold up through at least four seasons of racing and at least 35-40 starts, with horses being bred for soundness, durability and stamina as opposed to speed, precociousness and the quick buck. It would reverse many of the problems the breed has had in recent years, though not overnight as horses would slowly gain more stamina and be able to race more often and for longer periods of time.
I have gave up on the breeders cup after SA got it again. This whole WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS stuff is nonsense. Be thankful Coolmore still sends their 2nd string horses or it would be simply a US Championships.
- 1.Posted 12/08/2013 09:52AM
- 2.Posted 12/07/2013 07:42PM
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- 5.Posted 12/07/2013 03:42PM