Protect Racehorses from Performance-Enhancing Drugs

Target: United States Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid

Goal: Support legislation that would protect racehorses from performance-enhancing drugs

US Senator Tom Udall of New Mexico is working tirelessly to bring justice to the sport of horseracing, a pastime that has been increasingly featured in the press for its widespread, unscrupulous treatment of horses. Senator Udall’s drafted legislation, known as the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act of 2013, would allow the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) to reinforce the sport’s moral anti-doping standards. Passage of the bill would reestablish the honest tradition of the sport, prevent thousands of innocent horses from suffering the fatal results of performance-enhancing substances, and limit the number of horse and jockey injuries and deaths caused by horses breaking down from drug overdoses.

Unlike other bills that have been passed in recent years to protect racehorses, the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act does not require any federal taxpayer funds or federal agency regulations. The Act would grant the USADA power to control anti-dope regulations.

According to Senator Udall’s official website, along with creating rules for prohibited substances the USADA has plans to “create anti-doping education, put an end to race day medication, set a harmonized medication policy framework for all races with interstate simulcast wagering, require stiff penalties for cheating, including ‘one and done’ and ‘three strikes, you’re out’ lifetime bans for the worst cases, and ensure racehorse drug administrations comply with veterinary ethics.”

The USADA has the best interests of those involved with horse-racing in mind, with the intention to keep the sport safe while restoring its reputation. Protect the sport of horseracing from further corruption by performance-enhancing drugs, and encourage the Senate Majority Leader to support the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act.


Dear House Majority Leader Reid,

The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act is a bill that does not require taxpayer funds or federal agency regulations yet would help prevent the use of fatal, performance-enhancing drugs in the sport. The bill would enable the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) to independently establish and monitor the sport’s anti-doping standards as well as create anti-dope education and ensure that the health regulations concerning horses comply with “veterinary ethics.”

According to a New York Times investigation, a reported 24 horses die at racetracks every week. Their deaths often go uninvestigated, and many can likely be linked to steroids. The sport of horseracing has been corrupted by these performance-enhancing drugs, meant to disadvantage those jockeys who have trained their horses with honest, healthy and humane means.

In addition to the loss of horses comes the threat to jockeys, whose steroid-driven horses undergo frequent breakdowns due to the drugs. By allowing the USADA to take control of the health regulations behind the horseracing industry, according to their proposed standards, the pastime of horseracing can reclaim an honest reputation devoid of drug-related fatalities. Please support passage of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act: guarantee that all racers have a fair shot at winning, and help spare the lives of horses and riders participating in the age-old tradition.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Eadweard Muybridge via Wikimedia Commons

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