Harness Racing Commission

Statutory Authority: 3 Delaware Code,

Section 10000 (3 Del.C. §10000)

3 DE Admin. Code 501


501 Harness Racing Rules and Regulations

The Delaware Harness Racing Commission, pursuant to 3 Del.C. §10005, proposes to amend rule to clarify that the Commission will retest the primary sample drawn if the initial test comes up high, not redraw a second blood sample from the horse. The Commission will hold a public hearing on the proposed rule change on January 17, 2006. Written comments should be sent to Hugh Gallagher, Administrator of Harness Racing, Department of Agriculture, 2320 S. DuPont Highway, Dover, DE 19901.

8.0 Veterinary Practices, Equine Health Medication

(Break in Continuity of Sections)

8.9 Prerace Testing by Blood Gas Analyzer or Similar Equipment

8.9.1 Notwithstanding any other provisions of these Rules to the contrary, the Commission may conduct prerace and postrace testing with the use of any accepted, reliable testing instrument, including but not limited to a blood gas analyzer for measuring excess carbon dioxide in blood samples.

8.9.2 The Presiding Judge shall announce the selected races or horses for testing and the appropriate time and location.

8.9.3 All horses shall be brought to the paddock or other secure, designated area for the prerace testing before its first warm up, based on the Commission published paddock times.

8.9.4 Each horse entered to compete in the racing program shall be present in his or her designated paddock stall with a groom for the purpose of having a blood sample drawn by the Commission Veterinarian.

8.9.5 The order and number of horses which shall have blood drawn for prerace testing shall be at the discretion of the Commission and the presiding judge.

8.9.6 The Commission Veterinarian will be responsible to verify with the testing machine technician that the blood gas analyzer test is completed for the specific horse in question. The Commission Veterinarian or his designee will inform the trainer or groom if their horse will be retested or can be given permission to leave the paddock.

8.9.7 Refusal-Failure or refusal by a licensee to present a selected horse under his care, custody, or control for blood gas analyzer testing, or who refuses in any other way, shall result in an automatic scratch of the horse from the racing program, and any other appropriate disciplinary action in the discretion of the judges. The Commission Veterinarian shall document the name of the trainer or person who refuses to have blood drawn from the horse, and shall file a report with the Commission.

8.9.8 Exercise Prior to Testing-In the event that the horse has exercised prior to testing and the horse tests below the Commission standard for a high blood gas test, the horse can be retested upon the discretion of the Commission Veterinarian or presiding judge, or tested post race.

8.9.10 Post Race Testing-The blood gas analyzer machine or similar testing equipment may be used for the post-race blood gas testing on selected horses. The collection of samples will be pursuant to Rule 8.4.3 and testing of split samples will be pursuant to Rule

8.9.11 The Commission Veterinarian will provide documentation reflecting the tattoo or name of the horse from which the blood was drawn, the date and time the blood was drawn, and any other identifying information.

8.9.12 Trainer Observation of Testing-The trainer or other designated representative is permitted to observe the testing procedure, but not to question the technician or otherwise disrupt the testing.

8.9.13 The Presiding Judge, Commission Veterinarian, and blood gas technician will ensure that the blood gas analyzer or other testing equipment is calibrated in compliance with the recommended calibration and maintenance procedures for the machine, and that the testing machine is in proper working order.

8.9.14 In addition to the provisions of Rule 8.3 and unless otherwise permitted by these Rules, no foreign substance shall be carried in the body of a horse when the horse is on the grounds of the licensed racetrack; it shall be a violation of this rule for a horse to test positive in a pre-race test result using a blood gas analyzer or other testing equipment.

8.9.15 The penalties for post-race positive tests contained in Rule 8.3.2, may apply to pre-race test samples that are positive for a prohibited substance. A positive test result from a pre-race sample tested on the blood gas analyzer machine is subject to the recommended penalty in Rules 8.3.2 and For pre-race testing the Commission may use a testing machine that uses the Commission standard in Rule present in a horse in excess of levels at which such substances could occur naturally and such prohibited substances shall include a total carbon dioxide level of 37 mmol/L or serum in a submitted blood sample from a horse or 39 mmol/L if serum from a horse which has been administered furosemide in compliance with these rules. The Commission may alternatively use a testing machine that measures carbon dioxide levels in pre-race samples using a Base Excess testing protocol. Under this alternative protocol, the prohibitive Base Excess concentrations are as follows: Base Excess level of 10.0 mmol/l (mEq/l) or higher or non-furosemide (Lasix) treated horses and Base Excess (BE) level of 12.0 mmol/l (mEq/l) or higher for furosemide (Lasix) treated horse. The level of uncertainty will be included before it is considered a violation of these Rules. The level of uncertainty is 0.4 mmol/l (mEq/l) and a positive test report must include this level of uncertainty. A horse must show a Base Excess (BE) level of 10.4 mmol/l (mEq/l) or higher for a non-furosemide (Lasix) treated horse and Base Excess (BE) level of 12.4 mmol/l (mEq/l) or higher for furosemide (Lasix) treated horse, in order for a violation to be reported under this Rule.

A commission representative will notify the trainer or licensed designee and the primary blood sample of the horse in question shall be immediately retested. In the event that a second blood gas analyzer test is necessary, the Commission Veterinarian or his designee will take a rectal temperature of said horse. The horse’s temperature will be recorded on the veterinarian’s control sheet.

8.9.16 With respect to a finding of a prohibited level of carbon dioxide in a blood sample obtained from a prerace blood gas analyzer test result, there shall be no right to testing of the "secondary sample" by the licensee, provided that a "secondary sample" shall be transported to the designated Commission laboratory on an anonymous basis for confirmatory testing. In the event that the initial blood gas analyzer test result is confirmed by the test result of the official Commission laboratory, such test results shall be prima facie evidence that the prohibited drug was present in the horse at the time it was scheduled to participate in a race and is prima facie evidence.

9 DE Reg. 1031 (01/01/06)(Prop.)

*Please Note: As the rest of the sections were not amended they are not being published. A complete set of the rules and regulations for the Delaware Harness Racing Commission is available at: