In most sports you will find that there are some kind of performance enhancers that need to be controlled by the appropriate authorities and Horse Racing is no different. Australia are taking a zero tolerance policy to any kind of drugs including anabolic steroids. This comes as no surprise as as recently as 5 months ago there were some drug scandals in the UK which led to Mahmood Al Zarooni being banned for a massive 8 years after it was uncovered that he was doping horses. This is a high profile trainer and was responsible for the likes of Godolphin being on top form.
The rules are different in each country and it was legal in countries such as the United States and the United Arab Emirates. The original founder of Godolphin, Sheikh Mohammed decided to ban a a later date decided to ban all kind of performance enhancer drugs in the United Arab Emirates. Following suit – the Australian Racing Board have announced that the ban will take place from May 2014 and it will include all thoroughbreds aged 6 months and over. The Chief Executive of the Australian Racing Board Peter McGauran stated:
“The ban on anabolic steroids goes far beyond any other racing jurisdiction outside of Europe and was decided by the ARB Board after lengthy consideration of veterinary and scientific advice and consultation with trainers’ and owners’ associations. The ARB has adopted a zero-tolerance policy to the use of anabolic steroids and will institute heavy penalties for breaches of the ban.”
He then went on to say that with this action the aim to ensure that the public have complete confidence in the sport and although it’s now very unusual for these drugs to be used at this time – the general consensus that they should be banned altogether to be sure. He commented further that this sport just like any other should be based on the talent of the trainer, the jockey and the horse and not in any way based on what drugs they can be given to give them an unfair advantage over any other.
It seems this move is a popular one with the Chief Executive of the British Horse Racing Authority stating that it was very good news and that he feels it is a massive step forward in ensuring that the anabolic steroids are banned throughout the world.
We personally think its fantastic that the Australian Horse Racing Authority has decided to put these measures in place – any sport needs to be fair to everyone involved and how can it be fair when some people are playing by the rules and others aren’t? This will hopefully ensure that all competitions will be on an even keel and it allows the competitors to show their talents without being under suspicion of using performance enhancers.