Trainers And Vets Under Spotlight – NHA Acts Against ‘Liberal Use Of Medications’

It's not limited to an individual Veterinarian or Trainer

The National Horseracing Authority have finally lifted the veil on weeks of speculation following Out of Competition Specimen Collection performed by its Officials at Randjesfontein Training Centre and Turffontein Racecourse on Monday, 24 July 2023.

This was as a result of investigations conducted into the veterinary treatments of horses declared as upcoming runners.

In a media release published on Friday by the racing regulator, we are advised that pending the results of the NHA Laboratory analysis, on-site observatory evidence along with evidence provided by the Officials and after careful consideration of the contents of the Veterinary Treatment Register (VTR), AXEL COLLINS, NAPOLEAN and YOURE MY SUNSHINE were withdrawn from race meeting on 27 July 2023 at 09h25, in terms of Rule 4.2.18.


The NHA Laboratory, having conducted the requisite screening, has confirmed that specimens collected from AXEL COLLINS and YOURE MY SUNSHINE, revealed upon analysis the presence of four (4) prohibited substances, of which one (1) substance was not recorded in the Trainer’s VTR.  An Inquiry will be opened into the one (1) substance that was NOT recorded for each of the respective two horses.

The investigation thus far has raised a host of serious concerns in relation to horse welfare, including the liberal and regimented use of medications and/or treatments administered to horses during the days preceding racing and the accuracy of the recordal of such treatment in the relevant VTR. It appears that this practice has become widespread and therefore not limited to an individual Veterinarian or Trainer.

The NHA advocates a fair and level playing field for all horses and, most importantly, for only fit and healthy horses to participate in races.

The initial findings of this investigation have raised a myriad of alarming concerns and the NHA is in the process of conducting further investigations into practices, methodologies, mitigatory procedures, as well as considering possible amendments to the Rules, in order to eliminate such practices that some stakeholders wrongly believe to be acceptable and humane!

Please visit to view the latest amendments to the Rules for comment/feedback which closes at 23h59 on Sunday, 6 August 2023.

National Horseracing Authority

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