Friday, March 6, 2009

Kentucky Derby to "Super Test" Winning Horses

It's been awhile since my last two posts on horse racing, but the sport is making news two months before the Kentucky Derby.

Churchill Downs in a release this past Monday said it will implement new safety measures for this year's Derby and all of its tracks. All winning horses will get a "super test" for more than 100 types of drugs exceeding the previously required amount. Other safety measures included are extending the safety tests for track surfaces, banning certain types of whips and prohibiting horses younger than 24 months old from racing.

Good for Churchill Downs for instituting the "super test", but one has to wonder why not provide the test for all participants? If the goal is to prevent all the cheats, super test everyone, not just the winners.

Any good news is a step in the right direction for this sport after the year horse racing had. Since last year's Derby, there was a Congressional hearing, another suspension for trainer Rick Dutrow, the euthanizing on the track last year of Derby runner up, Eight Belles, and the realization that Derby winner Big Brown was roided out of its mind on Winstrol and didn't win the Triple Crown when he wasn't on the juice.

This racing season will probably have its share of drama, shocking revelations and a suspension or two. In other words, business as usual.

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