HIWU Launches Mobile App; Substance Lookup Tool and Educational Resources Among Key Features

HIWU Launches Mobile App
The National HBPA is sharing this press release from HIWU to help keep horsemen informed:

The Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU) announced that it has launched a mobile HIWU app to assist stakeholders in the Thoroughbred industry with the components of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority’s (HISA) Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Program.

The free app is highlighted by a Prohibited Substances database, through which users can look up any of the substances that comprise HISA’s Prohibited List of more than 1,300 Banned Substances and Controlled Medications. Each substance listing is populated with information about the substance such as HISA classification, licensed and colloquial names, Detection Times and Screening Limits (as applicable), and the Food and Drug Administration label’s indication for use.

In addition to the substance lookup tool, the app includes access to all educational materials on the HIWU website and the ability to submit tips through HIWU’s anonymous whistleblower platforms. Pending and resolved matters concerning potential violations of the ADMC Program are also available for viewing at any time.

The app is configured to send push notifications to mobile devices to alert users about important updates.

“HIWU is pleased to offer a convenient app to the Thoroughbred industry to enable participants to access important resources about the ADMC Program wherever they are,” said Ben Mosier, executive director of HIWU. “We are especially excited about the substance lookup feature, which will bring this important information to the fingertips of horsemen, veterinarians, and others who need to be able to easily consult the Prohibited List.

“The app is inclusive of HIWU’s broader education efforts to assist industry participants to operate in compliance of the ADMC Program.”

The app is now available for download on the Apple and Android app stores.

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Announcement by HISA & HIWU Regarding Provisional Suspensions

Background:  Current ADMC rules include a rule adopted from the World Anti-Doping Code requiring that any Responsible Person (i.e., trainer) whose Covered Horse tests positive for a Banned (doping) Substance be Provisionally Suspended while his/her case is being processed.  A Provisional Suspension does not in any way change the presumption of innocence and is not an early determination of guilt.  Instead, it is intended as a precaution to safeguard the integrity of the sport, horse welfare, and the rights of rule-abiding trainers.  Provisional Suspensions have been instrumental in protecting the integrity of other sports and were introduced into horseracing for that reason.

Discussion: Last Friday, HIWU was informed that a split (B) sample did not confirm the original   Laboratory finding, and, accordingly, pursuant to the ADMC regulations, HIWU dismissed the violation against a trainer who had been Provisionally Suspended 20 days earlier.  This raised concerns regarding the imposition of Provisional Suspensions at this early stage of the ADMC Program’s rollout. Consequently, HISA’s ADMC Committee, which has oversight of the HISA ADMC rules, held a meeting and decided to make various policy decisions regarding the imposition of Provisional Suspensions under the ADMC Program.  Various proposals received from horsemen’s groups were considered during the course of these discussions.

Policy ChangeThe following policy changes will be effective immediately and shall apply

to any Responsible Person Provisionally Suspended following a positive test for a Banned


  1. Any Responsible Person who requests that the B Sample be analyzed following a positive test for a Banned Substance shall be eligible for postponement of the effective date of the Provisional Suspension until such time as the B Sample result is returned. If the B Sample confirms the A Sample, the Responsible Person shall be Provisionally Suspended upon Notification of the B Sample confirmation, except that the Responsible Person shall not be required to scratch any Covered Horses entered to race prior to Notification of the B Sample confirmation. However, the Responsible Person shall not be entitled to enter any Covered Horses to race subsequent to Notification;
  2. Any Responsible Person who does not request the B Sample analysis shall be Provisionally Suspended upon such election, except he/she shall not be required to scratch any Covered Horses entered to race prior to Notification of the A Sample positive finding. However, the Responsible Person shall not be entitled to enter any Covered Horses to race subsequent to Notification;
  3. Any Responsible Person with more than one horse that tests positive for the same Banned Substance within a six (6) month-period or who has received notice of another potential violation relating to a Banned Substance (e.g., possession, use) shall not be eligible for delayed imposition of a Provisional Suspension as set forth in paragraph 1 above;
  4. Covered/Responsible Persons will continue to be Provisionally Suspended upon the notice of the A Sample result if the result involves the detection of the following Banned Substances:

3,4- methylenedioxypyprovalerone                                Methylphenidate;

  (MDPV, Bath Salts);                                                            Mitragynine;

Alpha-pyrrolidinovalerophenone                                     Myo-inositol trispyrophosphate (ITPP);

  (Alpha PVP);                                                                          Nikethamide;

Amphetamines (e.g., Methamphetamine,                    Opioids (natural and synthetic) and

  Cathinone, Mephentermine, Methcathinone);           opioid agonists (e.g., apomorphine,

Benzylpiperazine (BZP);                                                         hydrocodone, hydromorphone,

Chlorpromazine;                                                                      oxycodone);

Erythropoietin (EPO) and EPO mimetics;                       Pentylenetetrazol;

Ethylphenidate;                                                                     Phencyclidine (PCP);

Etorphine;                                                                                Phendimetrazine;

Fentanyl and Fentanyl analogs;                                        Phenmetrazine;

Mazindol;                                                                                 Strychnine;

Meldonium;                                                                            Synthetic cannabinoids;

Metaraminol;                                                                         Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC); and

Methaqualone;                                                                      Venoms and toxins (e.g., alpha

Methylhexanamine;                                                               cobratoxin, ziconotide, botulinum


  1. During a Provisional Suspension, which is not a Final Suspension, Covered/Responsible Persons may engage in caring for and exercising their Covered Horses, except they cannot breeze or race Covered Horses registered to them. Should they want any Covered Horses to breeze or race, they must transfer those horses to another Responsible Person (i.e., trainer) in a bona fide transfer approved by the stewards. If the Responsible/Covered Person is an Owner, ownership of the Covered Horse must be transferred in order for it to be eligible to breeze or race.   In addition, Covered/Responsible Persons: (i) must take down or cover any personal signage bearing their name or related to their operations where the Covered Horses are located at the racetrack; (ii) cannot claim Covered Horses or bring new Covered Horses into their barn; and (iii) cannot be employed in any capacity involving Covered Horses (including, but not limited to, acting as an agent for an Owner of Covered Horses or working as an exercise rider for Covered Horses.)

Additional Notes:

  • The Policy Change shall also be applied to any currently suspended Responsible Persons. HIWU will be in contact with all those currently Provisionally Suspended to explain next steps.
  • The Responsible/Covered Person must pay for the B Sample analysis within seven (7) calendar days of requesting it. In cases of financial hardship, and upon the demonstration of such hardship, the Covered Person may be entitled to a payment plan to cover the cost of B Sample analysis.
  • This new Policy will remain in effect for so long as the ADMC Committee deems appropriate. Should the ADMC Committee decide at some future date to abandon or modify it, the industry will receive at least thirty (30) days’ advance notice.

Public Reporting under the ADMC rules will continue to occur at the time of the EAD Notice of the A Sample positive test.

Horsemen Advisory: Testing Following A Breeze Is Not Limited To Vets’ List Works

The Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit reminds horsemen and veterinarians that covered horses are subject to testing at any time, including following routine timed workouts (post-work testing). Testing following workouts is not limited to vets’ list workouts.

Please note that post-work samples are not collected after all routine timed workouts. Trainers will be notified of selection, and sampling will be performed, within one hour of the completion of the workout.

The following substances are prohibited in post-work samples:

  • Banned Substances
  • Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Corticosteroids
  • Local anesthetics
  • Analgesics
  • Intra-articular injections containing any substance are prohibited within 7 days of a routine workout, i.e., if the injection(s) is/are administered on Saturday, the horse cannot breeze until the following Saturday. A withdrawal interval of longer than 7 days may be necessary in consideration of factors such as the number of joints treated and dose of the administered corticosteroid, as well as the administration of corticosteroids by other routes (including, but not limited to oral, intramuscular, and topical).
  • The stacking of NSAIDS or corticosteroids is also prohibited.
  • The regulation of banned substances, NSAIDS, local anesthetics, and analgesics in post-work testing mirrors post-race testing.
  • For routine timed workouts, the following corticosteroids are regulated based on established screening limits in blood: Betamethasone, Dexamethasone, Isoflupredone, Triamcinolone, and Methylprednisolone.

All other controlled medications, including furosemide (Lasix), are permitted to be present in a post-work sample, regardless of the horse’s age or class.

Horsemen and their veterinarians are encouraged to consult the published detection timeswhen considering treatments in advance of a routine timed workout.

More information about the differences in testing and procedures between routine timed workouts and vets’ list workouts can be found here. You may also contact Dr. Mary Scollay, HIWU Chief of Science, at (859) 489-7677 or mscollay@hiwu.org; and Dr. Patti Marquis, HIWU Director of Equine Medical Resources, at (816) 516-5641 or pmarquis@hiwu.org.

HISA Issues Updated Guidance on Intra-Articular Injections

July 14, 2023 (Lexington, KY) – The Anti-Doping and Medication Control Standing Committee (ADMC) of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (“HISA”) has re-considered the Intra-Articular injection rule and has issued new guidance regarding its enforcement.

HISA ADMC Rule 4222 prohibits Intra-Articular injections on Race Day, within 14 days prior to Post-Time and within 7 days prior to any Timed and Reported Workout. Effective July 16, 2023, the Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU) will sanction the Responsible Person of any Covered Horse that violates the prohibition on Intra-Articular injections within 7 days prior to a Timed and Reported Workout as follows (within a 365-day period):

  • 1st violation: $3,000 fine.
  • 2nd violation: $6,000 fine, 10-day suspension.
  • 3rd violation: $10,000 fine, 30-day suspension.
  • 4th violation: $20,000 fine, 60-day suspension.
  • 5th violation: $25,000 fine, 120-day suspension.

Beginning July 16, 2023, Covered Horses will not be subject to a period of ineligibility for violations of the Intra-Articular injections Workout rule or Race Day rule, unless multiple violations involving the same horse are incurred within the 365-day period.

Until this new guidance takes effect on July 16, and in accordance with guidance previously announced on June 26, the prohibition on Intra-Articular injections within 7 days prior to any Timed and Reported Workout will continue to be enforced only against the Covered Horse through the imposition of a period of ineligibility of 30 days. The sanctions associated with the prohibition on Intra-Articular Injections within 14-days prior to Post-Time have not been modified, other than the fact that the Covered Horse may not be suspended.

The full language of today’s issued guidance, which was approved by the HISA ADMC Standing Committee and the HISA Board, can be found on HISA’s website.

Under Rule 4222, the day of administration is considered day 1. A horse may breeze on day 8 following administration and may enter to race at any time, provided the race is on day 15 or later.

Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority Submits Prohibited Substances List to the Federal Trade Commission

October 26, 2022 (Lexington, Ky.) – The Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) has submitted to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) a technical document listing and categorizing 1,365 Prohibited Substances covered by HISA’s anti-doping and medication control (ADMC) rules and further dividing them into subcategories of Banned Substances and Controlled Medications. The document is now subject to final approval by the FTC ahead of the ADMC Program’s January 1, 2023 implementation date.

This technical document was developed by HISA’s ADMC Standing Committee and approved by the Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU), which will administer the program. In a memorandum to racing participants, HISA ADMC Committee Chair Adolpho Birch summarized the contents of the document submitted, which underwent several modifications based on substantive feedback from racing participants and experts during a public comment period before submission to the FTC.

“The Prohibited Substances List is the result of extensive consultation with industry and subject matter experts and is informed by established research. Once approved by the FTC, it will serve as the backbone of HISA’s ADMC Program set to take effect in the New Year,” said Birch. “Through our collective efforts led by the ADMC Committee, we are proud to introduce U.S. Thoroughbred racing’s first-ever uniform Prohibited Substances list that will be applied on a national basis to advance integrity, transparency and accountability in the sport.”

“Effective anti-doping programs require clear guidance on prohibited substances, and we are pleased with the document that was submitted to the FTC,” said Ben Mosier, executive director of HIWU. “This list will play a key role in HIWU’s assignment to enforce HISA’s ADMC Program, and we are prepared to take on this critical responsibility on behalf of the Thoroughbred industry.”

In addition to listing and categorizing all prohibited substances covered by the ADMC Program, the document details detection times, screening limits and thresholds. The modified document submitted to the FTC is available on the HISA website.