PENALTY MODIFICATIONS

UPDATE: At the December, 2019 meeting The Model Rules Committee tabled action on this proposal. The RCI Board opted to consider this matter and voted to approve the concept in principle, but remand the matter to the Drug Testing Standards and Practices Committee to consider ways to simplify the concept of increased penalties for the most egregious violations of doping and equine endangerment. A streamlined proposal will be considered by the Committee at a meeting scheduled for March 12, 2020.

Prior Information: The Drug Testing Standards and Practices (DTSP) Committee has released for consideration Proposed Revised Penalty Guidelines for violations of the anti-doping or medication rules in horse racing.   

Penalties for “Doping or Equine Endangerment” violations would be effectively doubled from the existing Class A penalties, with a first violation requiring a two to five-year suspension of the trainer and a minimum $50,000 fine which could be increased to $100,000 with aggravating circumstances.   A second violation in any jurisdiction would trigger a license revocation.    

The proposal would also impose a $25,000 fine on an owner if there is a second lifetime offense in the owner’s stable in any jurisdiction.  A third offense would suspend the owner for a minimum of thirty days to as much as a year and impose a minimum fine of $50,000 which could be increased to $100,000. 

Because of the seriousness of “Doping or Equine Endangerment” violations a summary suspension would be immediately required, regardless of whether there is an appeal or not.

As the ARCI Model Rules require disclosure to a commission or the maintenance of required treatment records for certain substances, a new recommended penalty for failure to do so would require a minimum  $500 fine for a first-time offense.  A second offense would bring a $2,500 fine, a third offense a $5,000 fine plus referral to the commission for possible license review.

The draft penalty matrix has been modified from the original proposal to create an additional level of recommended penalty. This simplifies the proposed changes and builds upon the existing guideline structure, which not compromising the ability to impose tougher sanctions for the most serious violations.

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