Five Months of the HISA ADMC Program: Update from HIWU Executive Director Ben Mosier


The development and implementation of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority’s (HISA) Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) Program represented a groundbreaking moment for Thoroughbred racing in the United States. For the first time, all industry participants across the country could look forward to working under the same set of medication rules and feel confident in the consistency of their application regardless of jurisdiction. The Horseracing Integrity & Welfare Unit (HIWU) launched the ADMC Program on May 22, 2023.

I am pleased to say that HIWU is gaining traction in the industry as stakeholders become comfortable with our processes and staff. We acknowledge the creation of HISA and HIWU were significant changes for the sport – a sport that has been around for centuries – but fortunately, my team and I have been able to establish strong relationships with industry stakeholders at racetracks, state racing commissions, and laboratories across the country. Building on the progress that has been made is important to us, and we look forward to continuing to collaborate with all of you.

In regard to industry partners, I must also recognize Alan Foreman, who has already been an outstanding ombudsman for HISA’s ADMC rules after less than two months in the role. His commitment to assisting horsemen while offering HISA and HIWU constructive feedback has been a huge asset for both my team and racing participants across the sport. HIWU has benefited from his passions for equine welfare, maintaining the integrity of Thoroughbred racing, and the rights of horsemen. We are greatly appreciative of his service.

As part of HIWU’s commitment to transparency, the industry can look forward to the release of an annual report in the first quarter of 2024 that will detail HIWU’s activities and testing data in 2023. Additionally, HIWU will issue quarterly reports with testing statistics beginning next year. All of this information will be published on the HIWU website so it can be viewed by anyone at any time. In the meantime, we continue to make updates to our Public Disclosures pages and the case information we share.

After five months of operations, the HIWU team can report the following metrics in relation to our impact on the sport:

• Since the launch on May 22, nearly 38,000 horses have been tested by HIWU-certified sample collection personnel.
• The HIWU Operations team has certified more than 500 individuals to serve as sample collection personnel through 64 training sessions and supportive visits. All sample collection personnel are trained in HISA-compliant policies and the paperless data collection system developed by HIWU, which enhances the integrity of the sample collection process and chain of custody procedures.
• The six accredited laboratories utilized by HIWU have reported the presence of more than 30 unique Prohibited Substances, including a dozen Banned Substances.
• There are currently 10 reported cases being adjudicated for alleged non-presence violations, including the possession of Banned Substances and the use of Prohibited Methods (e.g., use of intra-articular injections within 14 days of a race).
• HIWU has received positive samples for 23 substances included under the Atypical Findings Policy. Of those findings, 15 have already been resolved, with 14 deemed negative, and one pursued as an Adverse Analytical Finding (i.e., positive test). The remaining eight cases are pending.
• ADMC cases have been resolved in an average of 62 days from the date the alleged violation occurred (e.g., date of sample collection).
• The HIWU Investigations Unit has overseen more than 100 barn searches nationwide. These searches have resulted in 10 possession cases for Banned Substances.
• HIWU’s anonymous whistleblower platforms have received more than 70 tips.
• HIWU’s science team has conducted educational sessions via in-person meetings or Zoom to horsemen at more than 30 racetracks and training centers.
• The HIWU website contains more than 40 educational resources, including fact sheets and videos.
• The HIWU app, which features a comprehensive database of all Prohibited Substances, has been downloaded nearly 2,000 times in 13 countries.

While I am extremely proud of my team thus far, our work is just beginning. I need only to look forward to this week for our largest assignment to date: administering the ADMC Program for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.

To all those in the Thoroughbred industry who have worked with us to get this Program off the ground and running, from horsemen, veterinarians, and stewards, to test barn staff, state racing commission personnel, and laboratory directors: thank you. My team and I appreciate your collaboration, perspectives, input, and willingness to make this Program the best it can be.

Contact: Alexa Ravit, HIWU Director of Communications & Outreach
(816) 516-9572