At its meeting on 8 October 2019, the Executive Council considered recent issues which have arisen from the administration of altrenogest-containing products. Specifically, those issues relate to the presence of the anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS) trendione, trenbolone, and epitrenbolone in samples taken from horses that have been administered altrenogest-containing products.
The Executive Council considered a detailed report from technical committees on the issue. The Executive Council noted that there is no evidence to support that trendione, trenbolone and epitrenbolone are endogenous substances, and in these circumstances, there is no basis upon which a threshold may legitimately be applied to the detection of these substances. The Executive Council also noted that trendione, trenbolone and epitrenbolone as AAS are classified as major doping agents so that a screening limit cannot legitimately be applied to them.
Having considered those issues, the Executive Council agreed that a core principle set out in Article 6 of the IABRW (including Article 6A and 6E) must be applied. That principle dictates that horses in training and on race day must be free from major doping agents, including trendione, trenbolone and epitrenbolone. It was agreed that a zero-tolerance approach to the detection of these major doping agents must inform racing’s approach to the matter, irrespective of the potential cause of their presence.
This means that where a major doping agent, including trendione, trenbolone or epitrenbolone, is detected in a sample at any level, a prohibited substance violation arises and must be acted upon by a racing authority.
The Executive Council resolved as follows:
Applying the principles underlying Article 6 of the IABRW, where the substances trendione, trenbolone and/or epitrenbolone are detected in a sample taken at any time from a horse, that detection must be treated as a prohibited substance violation.
This position shall apply irrespective of whether the detection was caused by, or is suspected to have been caused by, the administration of an altrenogest-containing product.
The International Federation of Horseracing Authorities (IFHA) is the world peak body for the international sport of Thoroughbred racing. Its members are the national racing authorities across the globe which stage Thoroughbred races.
Major areas of the IFHA’s activities include:
• Making and amending the International Agreement on Breeding, Racing and Wagering (the IABRW)
• Policy development relating to welfare and safety of horses and riders
• International Race Planning and Grading (“black type”)
• World Rankings
• The fight against Equine Prohibited Substances and Practices
• Harmonization of Racing Rules
• Certification of IFHA Reference Labs
• Fostering commercial development of the racing industry globally
The IFHA is a foundation member with Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) of the International Horse Sports Confederation and is affiliated to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).