With the new Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act having passed through US Congress last year, US racing industry leaders have continued to embrace sweeping reforms, the most recent of which sees Kildare-based Equine MediRecord (EMR) provide its ‘revolutionary’ anti-doping and horse welfare software to the Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Del Mar in November.
The agreement is the latest notch in the belt of a company which launched its system just three years ago but has already amassed an impressive list of clients including the Thoroughbred Owners of California, Irish Veterinary and Welfare Commission, Irish Harness Racing Association, Kentucky Thoroughbred Association and the Arabian Racing Organisation.
EMR first provided its system to the Breeders’ Cup World Championships in Keeneland, Kentucky last year. With the event moving jurisdiction this year, under the supervision of the California Horse Racing Board, and a different racetrack, Del Mar Racecourse in Southern California, EMR has developed a new system to comply with this year’s rules and regulations pertaining to equine welfare and anti-doping protocols.
The company sells and maintains a software platform which allows for the full veterinary history of a horse to be recorded securely, ensuring the best possible horse welfare as well as aiding with crucial anti-doping procedures.
The Breeders’ Cup has been a leader in adopting and creating stringent regulations to ensure the welfare and safety of the human and equine athletes competing at its event. The new system EMR has developed for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships will automatically inform trainers from across the world of the safety and integrity regulations that need to be followed and what documents need to be submitted through the system to allow horses to run in the Breeders’ Cup at Del Mar.
Equine MediRecord CEO Pierce Dargan said it was “an amazing privilege to work with the Breeders’ Cup for the first time last year and we are of course extremely happy to work with them for the World Championships at Del Mar this year. Given it is in a different regulatory jurisdiction this year, California instead of Kentucky, changes had to be made to ensure it complied with the state rules.”
He added that “we believe our system has a role to play in the movement to help ensure that our children will be able to enjoy horse racing the way we have for generations – to be a part of that work is an honour and highly rewarding.”
Mr Dargan told the Kildare Nationalist he believes he met the Breeders’ Cup team for the first time when he went to the Breeders’ Cup at Santa Anita in 2019. He was invited to attend and speak at a horse owners’ conference which was being held in the days before the Breeders’ Cup to discuss their system and the benefits they could bring the horse racing industry in the US. It was after this event that he met Breeders’ Cup executives who said they were interested in learning more and this finally led to their partnership with Breeders’ Cup.
The Breeders’ Cup has always been a leader when it comes to adopting best welfare and anti-doping protocols. With the sport and its integrity in the spotlight the Irish innovation is sure to be adopted by more top racing organisations who are looking to ensure best possible welfare and anti-doping practices for the horses in their care.
Once records are entered into the system they cannot be altered, providing integrity and transparency for all concerned. With strict requirements in place for the competition at the Breeders’ Cup, such a tool is needed to ensure the integrity of the records while also allowing them to be digitally submitted to regulators like the California Horse Racing Board and Breeders’ Cup officials. This procedure also eliminates passing around paperwork to various partners who are following COVID-19 protocols.
EMR already boasts a number of endorsements from key stakeholders in the US, including the Executive Director of the California Horse Racing Board, Scott Chaney, and Dr William Farmer, the Equine Medical Director of Churchill Downs.
“The Equine MediRecord system is a major breakthrough in providing the latest and most comprehensive medical and testing records for all participants in this year’s World Championships,” said Dora Delgado, Breeders’ Cup Executive Vice President and Chief Racing Officer. “We are proud to partner with EMR again for this year’s Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Del Mar.”
For more information about Equine MediRecord, check out www.equinemedirecord.com.