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Race-Day Meds. Summit - Day 1

Published: June 13, 2011 9:02 pm ET

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Individuals and organizations representing some 16 racing jurisdictions from around the globe participated in Day 1 of an 'International Summit on Race-Day Medication, EIPH and the Racehorse' Monday, June 13 at Belmont Park in Elmont, New York. The two-day event is jointly sponsored by the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP), the National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA), and the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium (RMTC).

Monday’s session was open to the public and attracted 180 attendees. The morning session on Day 1 featured speakers:

  • Alex Waldrop, president and CEO of the NTRA; Greg Means, Washington, D.C. lobbyist for the NTRA; and John Della Volpe of SocialSphere Strategies, Inc., providing an overview of U.S. viewpoints on race-day medication.
  • Dr. N. Edward Robinson, professor, Physiology and the Matilda R. Wilson Professor of Large Animal Clinical Sciences at Michigan State University, providing an overview of Exercise Induced Pulmonary Hemorrhage (EIPH) and its prevalence and impact on horse health.
  • Dr. Steve Reed, equine specialist at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital and Emeritus Professor at the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine on management and treatment alternatives for EIPH.
  • Dr. Rick Sams, laboratory director of HFL Sport Science, on race-day medication and drug testing.

Morning session presenters were preceded by Rob Manfred, Jr., executive vice president of Major League Baseball, who discussed his experiences regarding performance enhancing drugs and drug testing in his sport.

The afternoon session on Monday was comprised of three EIPH-related panels:

  • 'Regulation of Race-Day Medications and Management of EIPH--International Perspectives' — Moderator: Dr. Rick Arthur, equine medical director, California Horse Racing Board. Panelists: racing regulators Dennis Egan (Ireland), Dr. Ted Hill (US), Bill Nader (Hong Kong); Dr. Brian Stewart (Hong Kong) and Dr. Anthony Stirk (UK)
  • 'Management of EIPH from a Trainer’s Perspective' — Moderator: Dr. John Kimmel. Panelists: trainers Christophe Clement (US/France), Richard Mandella (US), H. Graham Motion (US) and John Size (Hong Kong/Australia).
  • 'Management of EIPH from a Veterinarian’s Perspective' — Moderator: Dr. Scott Palmer, AAEP. Panelists: veterinarians Dr. Rod Daniel (US), Dr. Scott Hay (US), Dr. John McVeigh (South Africa/UK/France), Dr. Foster Northrup (US), Dr. Rob Pilsworth (UK) and Dr. Treve Williams (Austrailia).

Attendees also received written questionnaire responses from racing officials representing 13 countries.

“Today’s session offered an illuminating look into the medication practices and procedures in place in racing jurisdictions all around the world,” said NTRA President and CEO Alex Waldrop. “The information shared will assist greatly as we in the US plan the future course of race-day medication policies here at home. We were delighted by the enthusiastic turnout by both speakers and observers, and we greatly appreciate the New York Racing Association’s generosity in hosting the event.”

”The summit is not intended to serve as a debate on the efficacy of current US medication policies, but as a frank exchange of ideas and experiences from professionals all around the globe,” said Day 1 moderator Dr. Robert Lewis, a past president of the American Association of Equine Practitioners and Chairman of the RMTC. “I think everyone present today feels more knowledgeable about the issues currently at hand.”

“This was an impressive gathering of people on every side of the race-day medication question, and I was impressed how most everyone seemed to put any pre-existing agendas or biases aside and really dig into the issues,” said Day 1 moderator Dr. Scott Palmer, chairman of the AAEP Racing Committee. “We have to begin to look at these issues from a new and fresh perspective.”

The Summit will continue Tuesday, June 14 with a closed session which will include a facilitated discussion among members of the RMTC. The Monday, June 13 summit presentations are available at

The American Association of Equine Practitioners, headquartered in Lexington, Ky., was founded in 1954 as a non-profit organization dedicated to the health and welfare of the horse. Currently, the AAEP reaches more than five million horse owners through its over 10,000 members worldwide and is actively involved in ethics issues, practice management, research and continuing education in the equine veterinary profession and horse industry.

The NTRA is a broad-based coalition of horse racing interests consisting of leading thoroughbred racetracks, owners, breeders, trainers, horseplayers and affiliated horse racing associations, charged with increasing the popularity of horse racing and improving economic conditions for industry participants.

The RMTC consists of 25 racing industry stakeholders and organizations that represent thoroughbred, standardbred, american quarter horse and arabian racing. The organization works to develop and promote uniform rules, policies and testing standards at the national level; coordinate research and educational programs that seek to ensure the integrity of racing and the health and welfare of racehorses and participants; and protect the interests of the racing public.


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