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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

They're Baaack...

I noticed a link over at the Paulick Report the other day tucked away underneath the 3,000 Derby-related posts on horses, trainers, owners, breeders, ad nauseum about the Big Event. Congress is back knocking on horse racing's door. Letters were sent out last week by Senator Udall and Representative Whitfield, the congressmen on the House Committee on Energy and Commerce that has the responsibility for monitoring the industry and upholding the Interstate Horseracing Act.

You may remember two years ago in June 2008, hearings took place discussing the state of the industry, in particular, governance and horse safety. Integrity and horseplayer issues were largely ignored. The letters were directed to Waldrop at the NTRA, Phipps at the Jockey Club and Martin at RCI. It's comical that Congress keeps going back to the Barbaro and Eight Belles tragedies to lead into their questions of the industry. Funny, how they seem to show up always right around Triple Crown time.... At least, Waldrop can respond that he took measures and tell how great his Safety and Integrity Alliance is and how all the tracks (check that, the ones that participated) except Pimlico passed the rigorous independent testing to the Alliance Code of Standards. The RCI have established model rules and Racing and Medication Testing Consortium recommendations to protect horses and their riders. The Jockey Club....ummm....well Marzelli was the one adamant that horse racing can self regulate and didn't need central governance. Now Congress is back asking how they are doing with the "self regulation."

Responses are due back to Congress by May'll be interesting to see if more hearings will result after the three respondents answer the questions posed in the letters (which can be found at the link above). The Clouseau in me thinks that is where Congress will go....

I wonder if Mr. Phipps thinks that....

1 Comment:

The_Knight_Sky said...

Ha ha. Rockwell.
Memories of college days. Love it.

As for the industry's inability to get their act together, Congress must demand and follow through with a concrete outline for a centralized office. That is the seed that must be planted before all else.

Only then will we see Thoroughbred Racing right the ship. We all stand to gain from it.

Okay not "everyone", but 95% of us who contribute to the sport and business of racing.


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