Gary Stevens Weighs In

December 9, 2019

Gary Stevens, a Hall of Fame Jockey and a long time member of the Water Hay Oats Alliance, is calling for reform.  

“It’s time for a revolution to save our sport.  And it has to happen ASAP!

I believe good things can happen when mistakes are made. I was taught it’s okay to make mistakes but don’t make the same mistake twice. We have been making the same mistakes for decades in our industry. It’s time to correct that and take responsibility for our mistakes and right the ship we are sailing. 

The Horseracing Integrity Act can put us on the right course by turning the issue of drugs and medication in U.S. horse racing over to an independent expert on the subject.  The United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) functions under the international WADA code and practices under the highest rules of independence and integrity.”

Stevens has been on the forefront of reform since 2012 when he testified before a Pennsylvania Field Hearing on the Health of Jockeys and Horses in Horseracing.   The Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health’s hearing entitled “A Review of Efforts to Protect Jockeys and Horses in Horseracing” examined what reforms, if any, had been made in the horse racing industry to protect jockeys, horses, and the integrity of the sport.

Most recently Stevens appeared on CBS This Morning which originally aired on Saturday, November 30th.  When commenting on the need for national racing reform, he said “It’s gotta happen or they are done here. Period. And if they’re done here, it’s going to be a tidal wave across the United States.”The Water Hay Oats Alliance (WHOA) is a grassroots movement of over 1,850 like-minded individuals who support the passage of federal legislation to prohibit the use of performance-enhancing drugs in the sport of horse racing. The appointment of an independent anti-doping program run by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) will resolve the problem of widespread drug use in American racing and put U.S. racing jurisdictions in step with international standards.
Doping destroys public confidence in racing, defrauds the betting fan, weakens the genetic pool and, most importantly, puts the life and limb of our equine athletes and their jockeys at risk. It is obvious that after years of committee review and discussion, America’s racing industry cannot police itself by eliminating the proliferation of performance-enhancing drugs in our sport, nor does it possess the power to adequately punish the purveyors of these drugs.

The Horseracing Integrity Act

Via WHOA Press Release

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