In an effort to combat equine drug abuse by trainers in the sport of Thoroughbred racing, the Water Hay Oats Alliance has been formed. From their own website, “The Water Hay Oats Alliance (WHOA) is a grassroots movement of like- minded individuals who support the passage of federal legislation to prohibit the use of performance-enhancing drugs in the sport of horse racing.” They advocate for the USADA performing drug testing the same way that athletes in combat sports as well as track and field.
Below is a copy of the full Water Hay Oats Alliance press release which details their mission and interest as well as the trainers that support them in full.
“As trainers of horses we love, in a sport to which we have devoted our lives, we have taken a stand for clean racing by joining the Water Hay Oats Alliance. We are deeply concerned about the integrity of our sport, and are aware of the fact that without public support for horseracing, our sport will continue to lose enthusiasts as our fans support other sports where performance- enhancing drugs are banned. Each negative story in the news hurts us all.
We support clean sport and feel the best way to achieve a level playing field is to endorse the Horseracing Integrity Act that is now before congress. This federal legislation will give the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) the authority to create and manage one independent agency with one national policy that will bind all participants under one set of rules with one set of testing procedures and one set of penalties. This bill will create a path to uniformity in medication practices and policies throughout American racing, and it will bring all 38 racing jurisdictions together under one umbrella and, importantly, in alignment with international standards.
Passage of the Horseracing Integrity Act will help revitalize the horse racing industry and will protect horses and jockeys from those individuals who would seek to win races at any cost. We encourage like-minded colleagues to join us and to add their voices to the clamor for change by simply including their names on WHOA’s roster. Support of WHOA’s efforts will send a message to our fans and our legislators that clean sport is important to our industry.
Our sport has been faced with the issue of medication reform for decades. Unified and determined, we stand together to solve this problem once and for all for the future of American racing. Join us.”
The Water Haley Oats Alliance was signed by a total of 60 trainers. You can visit their own website by clicking here as well.