ARCI Updates Model Rules Of Racing

An updated version (6.3) of the Association of Racing Commissioners International’s Model Rules of Racing is now available on the association’s website on the Model Rules and Standards page. (www.arci.com).

The ARCI Model Rules represent the racing industry’s best practice regulatory standards, developed in consultation with industry constituencies and adopted by the regulatory members of the ARCI.

In most instances the ARCI Model Rules are recommended policies, although in some cases they have been “incorporated by reference” through statute or rule. In Florida, for instance, the State Legislature and Governor included some ARCI medication policies in state law directing the appropriate state agency to promulgate rules to effectuate their use. In Canada, the ARCI Model Rules pertaining to wagering have the force of law through the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency. In California, a new type of wager does not need specific legislative approval if the ARCI has a model rule that would be applicable.

The updated Model Rules Version 6.3 contains modifications to the following sections:

ARCI 010-010 (G), Number of Starters in a Race
ARCI 004-105 (G), Pick (n) Pools
“The first change grants the Stewards the authority to limit the number of starters in a race after consulting the horsemen’s group and jockeys if they determine that there are valid concerns that would jeopardize a safe, fair and equal start. Our first priority is safety and it is important that the Stewards have the flexibility to ensure that horses and riders are safe, even if it means that the number of starters may need to be limited,” RCI President Ed Martin said.

The second change clears the way for some possible new wagering opportunities this fall designed to increase fan interest.

Earlier this month, the ARCI approved a change to its Controlled Therapeutic Medication Schedule affecting the regulation of the therapeutic medication Detomidine, a sedative and analgesic used in veterinary treatment of horses. The medication, which is approved for use by US federal government policy, is to be stopped prior to race day so that it is not pharmacologically active when a horse competes.

In addition, a Model Rules Committee working group has developed a revised draft of a new Out of Competition Testing rule in consultation with various racing industry organizations that is expected to be released, along with their report, within the next week. A group of racing regulatory attorneys will also review this matter in an effort to ensure that any policy change will withstand legal challenge. This issue is complicated in that the statutory jurisdiction of some racing commissions is limited to horses that are physically located on the grounds of a facility they license.

ARCI Chair Judy Wagner expressed appreciation for “the diligence, hard work, and commitment to excellence that many industry participants contribute in the ongoing process of enhancing and improving the regulation of racing.” In particular, she mentioned the contributions of the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium, the Jockeys’ Guild, the American Association of Equine Practitioners, the North American Association of Racetrack Veterinarians, and the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Authority, among others.