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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mardi View Post
    Finally the story makes the media while equestrian magazines snooze nearby.
    Dear Chronicle of the Horse,

    I love you dearly, but this should have been YOUR story.

    May the new year 2013 bring you the courage to stand up and do real journalism when our community needs it most.

    Big thanks to the NYT for this A1 (in several ways) report. The video was excellent.


    61 members found this post helpful.

  2. #62
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    The rest of the world has very different drugging rules from the US for racing. The FEI has very different drugging rules from the USEF.

    Do we see a pattern?

    Why not just adopt FEI rules and be done with it? Make the RIDERS responsible and suspend them for meaningful periods of time. If it's a kid, tough. If the kids get suspended, the trainers would have no clients. Hell, suspend everyone--trainers, owners, riders, grooms, EVERYONE.

    If the riders get set down, there wouldn't be the farce of the straw man trainers who take the rap, ie the Mario Deslauriers situation at the Olympic Trials.

    Molly99, the test may come back "clean" because the USEF has such lax rules on what drugs in what concentrations are allowed.
    "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
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    7 members found this post helpful.

  3. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tha Ridge View Post
    This is not the issue. The kids these ponies are leased to aren't exactly fresh off the pony ride circuit; they ride just as well as any other kid and the trainers obviously aren't going to allow just any random kid to lease the pony. Most of the leases are in-barn (not sure if the kid leasing Humble at Devon trained with the Mandarinos normally or not) or are highly orchestrated by trainers.
    Not trying to be a know-it-all, but in case you were wondering.., they did not train with the Mandarinos. Both girls had there own ponies and were showing regularly in the children's ponies. Luckily, they got to try them the week before in Florida, so if it seemed they really couldn't handle it, they could know first-hand



  4. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by Molly99 View Post
    My thoughts:

    Having only vets administer IV shots at a USEF show will never happen. You think our costs are high now, can you imagine the increase for FEI level security on stabling and ship in areas at all USEF shows!!!!
    ...
    I really wish the Drug Forum from the USHJA convention was available online. It was a very informative discussion. I think most of you would be surprised at the LOW number of "positive" tests that the USEF finds. ...

    The USEF has one of the best testing programs in the world. It has been evolving for 25 years. ...

    Because we have the testing program in itself is one reason the majority of horses DO show "clean". Without a testing program I can't even imagine what it would be like....
    .
    You make a lot of good points...

    however I think its naive to think that just because there are a low percentage of positives drugs are not being used for "calming" which is an illegal use. Unfortunately many of the drugs used for calming are either allowed for other purposes (which allows abuse) or are not detectable. Two easy examples here are dex and magnesium.

    When we pretend that a drug testing program "proves" there is low abuse, we are closing our eyes to what is really happening - horses are being given medications with the sole intent of its calming properties or alternatively the horses are being kept up all night or LTD or ridden endlessly until they are exhausted with the objective of providing the "quiet" ride.

    Stronger penalties for owners and trainers (not the barn manager or groom) are absolutely needed. But perhaps more essential is the need to re-examine what kind of performance we want from our horses and how we are going to reward those perfromances.


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  5. #65
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    Edited.

    What is your point? The kids showed on the circuit with their ponies and wanted to lease one for Devon. A drugged or dead pony was not part of the lease.
    Last edited by Pennywell Bay; Dec. 28, 2012 at 05:48 PM.
    Come to the dark side, we have cookies


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  6. #66
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    The NYT is currently showing the article as its #1 most-emailed story. Honestly, the industry deserves whatever it gets from this. And IMO the trainers have brought it on themselves. Obtaining higher and higher prices for horses (and thus larger commissions), spending month after month on the road, showing the horses week after week after week, allowing clients to lesson and jump multiple times per week on the same horse, medicating the horses into oblivion, all pieces of an unfortunate puzzle. Yes, owners are culpable, too, but so many of them wholly trust their trainers to provide sound guidance. Step up USEF and professionals. It's time for everyone to recover their moral compasses.


    14 members found this post helpful.

  7. #67
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    "The burden for investigating Humble’s death fell largely to Ms. Williams, who described herself as a relatively inexperienced “pony mom.”

    “What if Humble had made it to the ring and collapsed with Katie on his back?” Ms. Williams stated in her protest filing in June. “I am extremely concerned for the welfare of the animals and the innocent children that could potentially be victims.”

    In his statement to The Times, Mr. Long of the federation emphasized that without subpoena power, its inquiries relied on members’ voluntary cooperation. He pointed out that Ms. Mandarino, through her lawyer, had refused to comply with requests for information and documentation of all substances given to Humble in the week before he died, and had even challenged the federation’s right to make the request.

    Ms. Williams helped gather statements for the hearing from people who said they had seen Ms. Mandarino giving injections to horses."

    This is wrong. Someone has to advocate for the horses besides a heroic bystander.

    You might not care for the tactics of the animal rights organizations, but the USEF is just asking for it by not stepping up with rule changes.

    I totally disagree with the idea that it would be a financial burden if the rules stated that only vets can administer to horses at a horse show. If your horse needs to see a vet because something is wrong with it, you should have to pay for the services of a vet. If there is nothing wrong with your horse besides show nerves or exuberance, you don't need a vet!
    A helmet saved my life.

    2014 goal: learn to ride like TheHorseProblem, er, a barn rat!


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  8. #68
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pennywell Bay View Post
    What is your point? The kids showed on the circuit with their ponies and wanted to lease one for Devon. A drugged or dead pony was not part of the lease.
    I had replied to another poster's question about show leases and how they typically work. In that, I mentioned that I didn't know if the girl who leased Humble normally rode with the Mandarinos, so ChocolateHooves was simply clarifying.


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  9. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tha Ridge View Post
    I had replied to another poster's question about show leases and how they typically work. In that, I mentioned that I didn't know if the girl who leased Humble normally rode with the Mandarinos, so ChocolateHooves was simply clarifying.
    Got it.
    Come to the dark side, we have cookies



  10. #70
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    Re: show leases-I do think they contribute to this problem.
    Unlike a lease of longer duration, renting a pony for a particular show is about success at that show. It's essentially a catch ride. But not all competent riders are good catch riders. Unfortunately, the onus is on the pony to perform as expected regardless of the ride. And more importantly with respect to each lessee, to perform as promised at that particular show, or in that particular class. Bad weeks are not allowed. There are no second chances, there is no "better luck next time".

    There is also minimal time to develop any sort of relationship yet any deviation from expected performance makes the transaction a failure. It's a try the pony at the farm once or twice then meet the pony at the show scenario. I can't imagine trying a horse twice, buying it, picking it up and driving directly to a show and expecting to win. That's crazy.

    The ponies in these situations are sports equipment. It's not about learning to ride, it's about winning a ribbon on a better piece of equipment than the one you have at home.

    I'm not defending the suppliers of these ponies, because I think that what a lot of them are doing is inhumane, but OF COURSE these trainers are going to do whatever they can get away with to make sure that the product they supply each week produces the desired results for their customers so that they continue to have customers. You can't expect people who are in it for the money to regulate themselves.

    Right now, in the hunter world in particular, the drug rules are so lax and enforcement such a joke that it appears that the only incentive anyone has to do the right thing is his or her own moral compass. Money, fame, success, etc. argue on the side of cheating.

    The USEF has to do a better job of protecting the horses from the greed of the people involved.


    16 members found this post helpful.

  11. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by JER View Post
    Dear Chronicle of the Horse,

    I love you dearly, but this should have been YOUR story.

    May the new year 2013 bring you the courage to stand up and do real journalism when our community needs it most.

    Big thanks to the NYT for this A1 (in several ways) report. The video was excellent.
    Ditto!


    3 members found this post helpful.

  12. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post

    I totally disagree with the idea that it would be a financial burden if the rules stated that only vets can administer to horses at a horse show. If your horse needs to see a vet because something is wrong with it, you should have to pay for the services of a vet. If there is nothing wrong with your horse besides show nerves or exuberance, you don't need a vet!
    It's not the cost of the vet, it's the cost of the added security to have a secure stabling area, treatment stalls, etc. Those are costs that everyone at the show would have to pay to enforce any type of "vet only" administering of iv.

    That type of rule would almost guarantee that every horse would have to have a stall in a secure area. There is no other way to "supervise" people.

    Think FEI stabling for EVERY HORSE SHOW!

    I am all for making change, but we need to be realistic with regard to our national level shows. One of the reasons our drug rules are different from other countries is that we have acknowledged the benefits of certain drugs. Many of those other drugs are banned in other countries.


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  13. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by CiegoStar View Post
    FWIW, one earlier poster described using a calculator to check drug amounts before a horse show. This is great, but this is the NORM in eventing, which has strict rules and very good adherence, unless I'm entirely mistaken. Maybe the USEA rules can be a model.
    Actually, the drug rules for US Eventing are EXACTLY the same as the drug rules for US Hunters and Jumpers.
    Janet

    chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).


    2 members found this post helpful.

  14. #74
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    I think most of you would be surprised at the LOW number of "positive" tests that the USEF finds.
    Well, yeah, but let's take an informal poll here: hands up, how many of you have ever actually SEEN a USEF drug tester alive and in person, let alone had a horse tested? How many have had a horse tested more than once?

    I have only ever SEEN a USEF drug tester ONE time at ONE show. I'm 54, been riding/showing since age 6. (And remember, I'm multi-disciplinary, so I "get around" a LOT: breed shows, carriage driving shows, etc. as well as H/J.) So if you do the math, that's pretty close to 50 YEARS of USEF shows at which I never saw a tester and could, if so inclined, have cranked whatever I wanted into horsie.

    With the multi-day shows, if the USEF testers are on the show grounds on Day 1 you can bet the word gets out within a couple of hours, and those testers are going to be VERY hard pressed to find a positive for the remaining 10 days of the show.

    I'm in agreement that the fines and suspensions should HURT (and that the entry blank loophole needs to somehow get closed, stat). I also wonder about making the *shows* pay to have USEF drug testers on the grounds at all times. If USEF passed that AND simultaneously passed a rule that required all USEF show managers to freeze their fees (ALL fees not just drug testing) for a period of x years, and just made the presence of USEF drug testers part of the show manager's cost of doing business I wonder if that would help?
    "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief



  15. #75
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    I can't find the actual text, but for US Eventing there IS a rule/policy that says that, if there is a horse death on the grounds

    - There WILL be a necrospy (paid for by the ISEA IIRC) and

    - The results are made available to the USEA.

    This is primarily because of concern about heart failures, and trying to determine what can be done to recognize and prevent them, but a drug analysis IS part of the necrospy.

    Therefore, it should be possible for the USEF to make a similar rule, either for ALL disciplines, or for specific disciplines.

    ETA that the USEA Crisis Plan
    http://useventing.com/sites/default/..._guide_opt.pdf
    says

    5. In the event of an equine fatality, the DVM will enact plan for transport of horse to designated facility for necropsy and report to CT.
    CT is "Crisis Team"
    Janet

    chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).


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  16. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by War Admiral View Post
    Well, yeah, but let's take an informal poll here: hands up, how many of you have ever actually SEEN a USEF drug tester alive and in person, let alone had a horse tested? How many have had a horse tested more than once?
    I saw three in the last year. I, personally, have never had a horse tested.

    Re: IV injections from vets only: HELL NO. Imagine the strain that would put on vets time-wise. What about the sick/colicky horse who needs an IV shot 10 minutes ago and now has to wait for the vet rather than be administered said shot from a fully capable trainer?


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  17. #77
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    War Admiral, I've seen drug testers many times, and had quite a few horses tested over the years- never a problem. I've seen them (rarely) at one day shows, and many times at bigger A/AA shows. They are out there, making the rounds.

    Also, I believe they have instructions to maintain a low profile, so maybe there were times they were around, but you didn't know it if you didn't get tested.


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  18. #78
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    I have seen testers at almost every show I have been at for the past few years. I have had horses tested on multiple occasions. Including the same horse pulled more than once of the course of a multi day show. The tester laughed when she realized it was the same horse. But they decide in the morning that they are testing X horse in X class. Just happened to be him both days.

    I do think it depends some on the level of showing you do, how frequently you see the testers. I would suspect in many cases some people don't even know the testers were at the same show as them, depending on stabling, etc. Unless you have been tested or someone has pointed it out, you may not know they were there.

    I do know they do not go the one day shows very often, but they do go.

    I understand the concept of having a tester at every show every day, but as there are shows that don't even have to have vet on the grounds, you will never find enough VETS to actually have this happen. It isn't all about the cost, but many vets will not give up a day of "real service" to be a horse show.


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  19. #79
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    Random thought, but why don't we just drug test everything that pins? You get a ribbon, you get escorted to a drug test. I don't know that it would stop people from using mag (at least, not until we have a test for it), but it's a start.

    The cost might be prohibitive, but I'm willing to pay a little more to ensure that I'm getting a level playing field.

    And as a pre-emptive to the "people will just lunge their horses into the ground isn't it better if we drug them" argument, we can make a rule limiting time spent on a lunge line, too. Make it so that lunging must be in a ring supervised by a steward.

    Personally, I think it's pretty sick that contemplation of such extreme rules has become necessary. Why can't people just do it for the love of the horses? If all you want is a ribbon, you can order the damn things online for way cheaper than actually going out and showing.
    "Are you yawning? You don't ride well enough to yawn. I can yawn, because I ride better than you. Meredith Michael Beerbaum can yawn. But you? Not so much..."
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  20. #80
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    Oh! Wow! Here we go.
    Elizabeth Mandarino vs The New York Times. (Though maybe she will realize that the NYT has better attorneys and deeper pockets..)?

    Perhaps this will light a fire under the USEF, nothing else seems to have..


    9 members found this post helpful.

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