Report: 77 Percent Of New York Thoroughbreds From Indicted Trainers Were Positive For Clenbuterol After Arrests

At a press conference this week, New York State Gaming Commission equine medical director Dr. Scott Palmer revealed that the majority of New York-based Thoroughbreds with trainers under federal indictment tested positive for clenbuterol in the weeks after the March arrests that rocked the racing world.

Standardbreds and Thoroughbreds that were trained by anyone named in the March indictment of more than two dozen trainers, veterinarians, and drug distributors in an alleged doping scheme were put on the veterinarian’s list for 60 days and had biological samples taken for testing. Palmer said this week that the horses were tested at least twice during this period. Of nearly 100 Thoroughbreds based in the New York at the time, Palmer said 77 had levels of clenbuterol in their blood.

Though Palmer is still compiling veterinary records for some of those horses, so far he says none of those records show administration of clenbuterol. That leads him to suspect the drug was not being given as part of a legitimate treatment for a diagnosed condition, but rather for its side effects, which mimic anabolic steroids with repeated usage.

Palmer called the discovery “concrete evidence that clenbuterol was being widely abused in the Thoroughbred horses,” according to the Thoroughbred Daily News.

This isn’t the first time testing has revealed widespread clenbuterol usage by the indicted trainers. In September, Kentucky Horse Racing Commission equine medical director Dr. Bruce Howard revealed that similar testing on Kentucky-based horses resulted in “a near 100 percent rate” of clenbuterol administration based on hair testing. Howard said that separately, treatment sheets submitted to the Kentucky commission as part of its veterinary disclosure rules have shown incidents of veterinarians prescribing the drug to entire barns.

Palmer said Mid-Atlantic states will likely tighten restrictions around clenbuterol administration.

Clenbuterol was one of several substances described in federal court documents as being favored by defendants for its performance-enhancing effects. Most of the other drugs listed there, such as EPO-like substances and “pain blockers,” are not permitted in active racehorses at all.

Read more at Thoroughbred Daily News

The post Report: 77 Percent Of New York Thoroughbreds From Indicted Trainers Were Positive For Clenbuterol After Arrests appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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