Next NSW Race

On 22 June 2018, Racing NSW provided notice to the industry in respect to the detection of trace levels of the anabolic steroid trendione and/or trenbolone in certain batches of veterinary prescription animal remedies containing the progestagen altrenogest, used to control the cyclical activity of fillies and mares. Racing NSW advised that, until further notice, trainers in NSW should not administer injectable products containing altrenogest at any time. Trainers were also advised they should not use oral altrenogest containing products within one clear day of racing and that these registered products must be used in accordance with the relevant manufacturer’s guidelines.

Further, in February 2020, Racing NSW provided a warning to the industry in respect of the administration of progestogen containing products not manufactured or registered for use in horses (such as Regumate Oral Progestagen for pigs) resulting in trendione being detected in a post-race urine samples. The use of such products, not manufactured or registered specifically for use in horses, are prohibited from being used in racing stables when there are specific products manufactured and registered for use in horses.

- S.G. Railton (Chairman of Stewards), August 2023


Racing NSW – Rider Overweight Policy [29/8/2018]

Owners and trainers are advised of the following updated Racing NSW policy in respect to applications for riders to ride overweight effective 1 September 2018.

1. For all NSW race meetings jockeys are permitted to declare up to 1kg overweight on any horse, provide that all applications must be made with the approval of connections and be notified to the Stewards by no later than rider declaration time to allow Stewards to make public notifications. No approval to ride overweight will be given after rider declaration time.

Rider Replacement Policy
2. Should a rider be found to be overweight and no application to ride overweight has been notified by rider declaration time, the Stewards shall order the replacement of the overweight rider with a suitable rider who can make the allocated weight and the overweight rider may be penalised by the Stewards. Should no suitable rider be available at the weight the Stewards may permit the overweight rider to ride the horse, subject to any penalty being imposed by the Stewards.

3. In accordance with the provisions of LR70, all apprentices are required to claim down to or ride at their minimum riding weight as notified to Racing NSW Stewards and cannot ride over their declared riding weight. An apprentice is not permitted to ride overweight.

True Weight Below 53kg – Saturday Metropolitan Race Meetings
4. In accordance with the provisions of LR25A, when a horse has a true weight below 53kg in an open handicap or benchmark race at a Saturday metropolitan race meeting, connections must by 9am on acceptance day, notify Racing NSW at what weight the rider will ride at below 53kg. In September and October 2018, the minimum weight a rider is permitted to ride at, subject to any apprentice claim, is 52kg. No application to ride under 53kg will be accepted after 9am on acceptance day and should no notification be received it will be expected the horse will carry 53kg.

5. In respect to horses that have a true weight below 53kg and whereby connections advise that their rider will ride the horse below 53kg, no overweight application will be permitted in accordance with LR25A.

6. For the avoidance of doubt, where a horse’s true weight is below 53kg and connections do not notify of their intention for the rider to ride below 53kg, a rider shall be permitted to ride up to 1kg overweight from the 53kg minimum, provided that the connections of the horse approve the overweight and notification is provided to the Stewards at rider declaration time.

7. If after Racing NSW has been notified that a rider is to ride below 53kg and that rider is found to be overweight, the Stewards shall order the replacement of the overweight rider with a suitable rider who can make the nominated weight and the overweight rider may be penalised by the Stewards. Should no suitable rider be available at the nominated weight, the Stewards may permit the overweight rider to ride the horse, subject to any penalty being imposed by the Stewards.

Racing NSW Guidelines for Human Urine Collection [17/5/2018]

These guidelines detail the recommended procedures to adopt for the collection of human urine samples by Swab Officials or Stewards. The guidelines identify the Rules of Racing pertaining to this sampling, along with an explanation of the contents of testing kits and procedures to adopt when conducting drug testing. The guidelines should be strictly adhered to by persons partaking in the testing process, as they ensure the integrity of the sample at all times.

Please click on the full document - Racing NSW Guidelines for Human Urine Collection

Important Notice: All Intra-Articular Injections [Updated 16/4/2020]

Trainers and veterinarians are reminded of their obligations under the provisions of AR 87, which prohibits the administration of any intra-articular preparation to a Thoroughbred racehorse within 8 Clear Days of a race, official trial or jump-out.

The Racing Australia Veterinary and Analysts Committee (VAC) notes there is significant anecdotal evidence of the increasing use of anti-inflammatory and pain relieving medications – as an alternative to corticosteroids – being given by intra-articular (IA) injection, such as the opioid morphine or the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) ketorolac (Toradol), and IA desensitising substances such as ammonium sulphate (Nuromene) and polyacrylamide hydrogel which may have a neurotoxic mechanism of action.

VAC has expressed concern that the use of IA opioids and NSAIDs close to racing would promote significant analgesia (pain numbing effect) and compromise the welfare of the horse, and the safety of the rider, in at least the same way as a corticosteroid IA injection close to racing would. Substances such as P-block which have come to attention at recent inquiries are unregistered injections and as such should not be held by trainers under AR 252.

Further, participants are reminded that this enforced stand down period for intra-articular injections must not be confused with the recommended “withdrawal” time for the particular drug used and/or for the joint injected.

The withdrawal period for a prohibited substance is calculated to ensure a horse is presented clear of a prohibited substance when sampled. In the case of intra-articular corticosteroid injections, the withdrawal period will depend on the type and dose of corticosteroid used, as well as the joint(s) injected.

Therefore, trainers and their veterinarians must carefully consider the circumstances of each particular case before deciding upon the appropriate time of intra-articular injection before competition to ensure that the horse is presented without detectable residues of the corticosteroid/or other substance administered.

Important Notice: All Intra-Articular Injections

Important Notice For Trainers: Notification Of Plating In NSW [Updated 16/4/2020]

Trainers are responsible at all times for ensuring that horses with race engagements comply with the plating requirements in accordance with AR 107.

Non-standard plating must be approved by the stewards. In compliance with this rule, trainers must declare prior to acceptance time, any use of the following:

• Synthetic Hoof Repair Material
• Bar Plates
• Tips
----Inclusive of any change from tips to plates or from plates to tips
• Hoof Pads
----Inclusive of Equi-PakTM pour in pads
• Concussion Plates
----Inclusive of shock shod plates and erethane protected race plates
• Glue on Shoes and Race Plates
----Either glue tab shoes or race plates fitted with EquiloxTM or similar

Trainers are encouraged to familiarise themselves with the Racing Australia National Equipment Registerer for more information regarding the provisions of AR 107

Important Notice For Trainers: Notification Of Plating In NSW

Warning About The Prohibited Substance Glaucine [22/7/2016]

Trainers are warned that the Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory (ARFL) is capable of detecting the presence of the prohibited substance glaucine.

Glaucine is an alkaloid found in certain plants in the Papaveraceae family, including poppy plants such as Glaucium flavum (yellow horn poppy) and Glaucium oxylobum. It is also found in other plants, for example, the tulip poplar tree Liriodendron tulipfera.

Glaucine would be a prohibited substance according to the Australian Rules of Racing since it has actions and effects principally on the nervous system, the cardiovascular system and the respiratory system (AR178B(1)), and would be categorised as an anti-hypertensive agent, anti-inflammatory agent, antitussive agent, bronchodilator and vasodilator (AR178B(2)).

Glaucine is not contained in any legitimate or registered human or veterinary medicines or supplements available for use in Australia.

Trainers are strongly advised not to use any unregistered or non-APVMA compliant products, including herbal and “natural” remedies, that are claimed to be of benefit in treating or managing horses known to be bleeders. Such products may deliberately or inadvertently contain glaucine, and its detection would constitute the finding of a prohibited substance.

Cobalt Threshold In Australian Rules Of Racing [Updated 16/4/2020]

Trainers are advised of the revised lower threshold level for cobalt in urine and a new threshold level for cobalt in blood plasma, effective 1 September 2016:

“Schedule 1 – Prohibited Substances Lists, Part 2, Division 3 – Prohibited list B thresholds The following
prohibited substances set out below in this Division 3 when present at or below their respective threshold are exempt from Prohibited List B -

(11) Cobalt at a mass concentration of 100 micrograms per litre in urine or 25 micrograms per litre in plasma.”

Cobalt is a naturally occurring trace element which is normally present in horses at very low levels as a result of the ingestion of feedstuffs that contain it in trace amounts. Cobalt is also present in the structure of vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin).

However, excessive amounts of cobalt have an effect on the blood system (Schedule 1, Part 2, Division 1 [1(i)]), and it would be classified as a haematopoietic agent (Schedule 1, Part 2, Division 1 [2(pp)]), and is a hypoxia inducible factor (HIF)-1 stabiliser (Schedule 1, Part 1, Division 1 (3)). Accordingly, cobalt is a prohibited substance pursuant to Schedule 1, Part 2, Division 1, 1(i.) and 2(pp.) and Schedule 1, Part 1, Division 1 (3) when occurring at levels above those naturally occurring or above those as a result of routine nutritional sources.

The threshold levels have been determined following an international survey of the racing horse population which measured cobalt levels in normal racehorses during training and racing. However, both the lowered urine cobalt threshold and the introduction of a plasma cobalt threshold provide a significantly more sensitive means of detecting the abuse of cobalt in racing.

Trainers are therefore advised:

* That a normal racing diet is more than sufficient to meet a horse’s nutritional requirements for cobalt and vitamin B12.
* That registered injectable therapeutic supplements containing cobalt such as V.A.M. Injection, Hemo- 15 and Hemoplex offer no nutritional advantages because incorporation of cobalt into the vitamin B12 molecule occurs within the horse’s gut.
* To consult with their veterinarians to ensure that their oral supplementation regimen provides only the amount of cobalt necessary to meet the scientifically established nutritional requirements of the horse for cobalt.
* To administer only nutritional supplements that are manufactured or marketed by reputable companies and to administer such supplements only at the manufacturer’s recommended dose and frequency of administration.
* To avoid the simultaneous use of multiple registered therapeutic supplements containing cobalt and vitamin B12
* That administration of products that are inadequately labelled or non-compliant, that make claims to enhance racing performance or to be ‘undetectable’, or which are marketed over the internet is extremely unwise and may lead to penalty under the Rules of Racing.
* To comply with the one clear day restriction on the injection of any substance prior to racing.

Please direct any queries to the Stewards or Veterinary Department on (02) 9551 7500.

Cobalt Threshold In Australian Rules Of Racing

Warning to Owners and Trainers regarding the Use of IBUPROFEN in Racehorses [17/2/2016]

(Please note this supersedes all previous advices on ibuprofen)

Ibuprofen is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug and therefore a prohibited substance according to the Australian Rules of Racing. Ibuprofen is available in numerous human preparations for oral and topical use.

Ibuprofen is not present in any registered veterinary product for use in horses, but is contained in a compounded paste preparation that has been given to horses as part of a rehabilitation program under veterinary supervision for the treatment of tendon injuries.

Please click on the following document:-

Warning to Owners and Trainers regarding the Use of IBUPROFEN in Racehorses


Advisory Charts For The Treatment Of Racehorses Before Competition [UPDATED 03/06/2020]

The following charts have been adopted by Racing NSW from nationally agreed guidelines for the management of treatment and medication of horses leading up to a race, trial or jump out.

Please find below links to the charts:-

Clear Day Rule Chart

Control of Alkalinising Agents Information

Control of Race Day Medication Information (Updated 4th January 2021)

If you have any questions please contact the Stewards or Veterinary Department.

Protocol for the Collection of Blood Samples Within One Clear Day of Racing (Updated 16/1/20)

AR.254 prohibits all injections, including the insertion of a hypodermic needle, to a horse within one clear day of racing. AR.254(1) provides discretion for the Stewards to approve the taking of blood samples for health and fitness assessment purposes from an acceptor on the day prior to racing.

Click on the following link to view the full document:-

Protocols For Applications For The Collection Of Blood Samples On The Day Prior To Racing

Warning From Stewards - Testing For Xenon And Argon Gas [1/4/2015]

Industry participants are warned that xenon and argon gas are prohibited substances in accordance with AR177B(2)(a) & (l) as they are categorised as both erythropoiesis-stimulating agents and also hypoxia inducible factor (HIF)-1 stabilisers.

Methods of analysis for the detection of xenon & argon in blood and urine samples have been developed by an anti-doping laboratory and Racing NSW is committed to ensure that the practice of xenon & argon administration does not pose a threat to the integrity of thoroughbred racing.

Recently the Institute of Biochemistry, German Sport University, Cologne, Germany was included into AR1 as an Official Racing Laboratory and Racing NSW places participants on notice that samples found to contain these substances by Official Racing Laboratories shall be reported to Racing NSW Stewards in accordance with AR178D(2).

Further participants are advised that samples stored at the Australian Racing Forensic Laboratory, may under the provisions of AR178DD(2), be re-submitted to be analysed for xenon & argon.

Racing NSW Stewards have introduced two important new policies [10/11/2014]

Please be advised Racing NSW has introduced two new policies as follows:-

Minimum Requirements for Dealing with Raceday Equine Emergencies


Horse Treatment Record Forms [4/1/2021]

Guidelines For Directors Of NSW Thoroughbred Racing Clubs [10/7/2014]

These Guidelines have been prepared to assist Directors of NSW Thoroughbred Race Clubs to better understand their roles, responsibilities and obligations as Directors and to assist them in undertaking their duties.

Please click on the following link to view the full document:-

Guidelines for Directors of NSW Thoroughbred Racing Clubs

Racing NSW Policy on Notification of Veterinary Conditions [Updated 16/4/2020]

Trainers are reminded of their obligation under Australian Rule of Racing AR 105 to report to Stewards any occurrence, condition, surgery or treatment may affect the horse’s performance.

Conditions that include mandatory reporting to the Stewards include:

- Any surgery aimed at correcting a condition that may have adversely impacted a horse’s prior performances (e.g. upper respiratory tract surgery or surgery to correct lameness/limb inflammation/pain or gait disfunction)

- If a horse is required to have a long period of rest to heal an injury sustained during racing or training (e.g. tendon/ligament strain)

- Lameness or musculoskeletal pain/inflammation

- Injury to any part of the body which could potentially adversely impact on the horse’s
performance or constitute a welfare or public perception issue on race day, or have resulted
in an interrupted preparation

- Any condition or occurrence that has resulted in the horse missing consecutive days of normal
exercise, or that has sufficiently interrupted and thus adversely impacted a horse’s
preparation for its next race

- Any systemic illness that has adversely impacted on a horse’s health or wellbeing or that may have resulted in an interrupted preparation e.g. colic attack respiratory infection, any illness causing loss of appetite

Racing NSW Policy on Notification of Veterinary Conditions

New Method Of Calculating Betting Deductions [13/7/2011]

From 1st August 2011 a new method of calculating betting deductions will come into effect in New South Wales, the Northern Territory, Queensland, and Victoria. These betting deductions are made to winning tickets when horses are withdrawn from a race.

The new method utilises an algorithm which enables a re-framing of markets to achieve the pre-withdrawal market percentage. This will deliver fairer results for punters.

Introduction of this new method is a joint initiative between the Australian Racing Board and the Australian Bookmakers Association. It has been developed by Intelligent Wagering Systems Pty Ltd and implementation is being carried out with the assistance of the National Chairmen of Stewards and the Australian Prices Network.

For more information go to -

Guidelines For Human Urine Collection [9/3/2011]

The guidelines in the following document details the recommended procedures to adopt for the collection of human urine samples by Swab Officials or Stewards.

The guidelines indentify the Rules of Racing pertaining to this sampling, along with an explanation of the contents of testing kits and procedures to adopt when conducting drug testing.

The guidelines should be strictly adhered to by persons partaking in the testing process, as they ensure the integrity of the sample at all times.

Guidelines for Human Urine Collection

Raceday Country Barrier Trials (Procedure If Less Than 4 Noms) [1/7/2011]

As trainers and owners sometimes miss a barrier trial for their horse in Country areas due to insufficient nominations, Racing NSW has agreed with the NSWTA to introduce a procedure in an attempt to rectify the situation.

After a six-month trial ended 30 June 2011, the following conditions are confirmed:-

1. An official barrier trial conducted on a raceday must be run over a distance of at least 800-metres, ridden in by licensed jockeys, apprentices or approved riders with no less than four starters (LR5).

2. If at the closing time of nominations less then four horses are entered then the Stewards or race club officials will (whenever possible) contact the trainers of those horses nominated and offer the opportunity of nominating additional horses for the trial to bring the field to the minimum required number of four starters

3. If a trainer referred to in Clause 2 without due cause;
a) fails to present such additional horse(s) to trial or;
b) presents an additional horse to trial that is deemed uncompetitive by Stewards, then the privileges of Clause 2 of being invited to add a late nomination may not again be extended to such trainer.

4. A horse which holds a race acceptance may not be instead added to a trial field

From 1 July 2011, Racing NSW will monitor the practical outcome of the conditions above and review the process if required.

Barrier Blankets [10/12/2002]

The use of barrier blankets will be permitted at race meetings in the metropolitan, provincial and country areas on a limited basis subject to the following conditions:-

(a) Design of blanket is approved by Chief Steward and to include dual straps attaching to barrier.

(b) Trainers must obtain approval of starter to use barrier blanket by horse performing satisfactorily with blanket at jump outs or trials.

(c) Trainers must notify Club at acceptance time if the barrier blanket is required at a race meeting.

(d) Club shall then notify starter to ensure barrier blanket is available at barrier.

(e) Continued use of blanket on a horse is at the discretion of the starter and a horse barrier tested to race in a trial wearing a barrier blanket must gain the approval of the starter before such blanket is removed.

(f) At all times the use of a barrier blanket shall be at the sole discretion of the starter.

Gear on Trial of a Barred Horse [10/12/2002]

Please be advised that any horse which has been barred from racing until it trials to the satisfaction of the Stewards must wear in that trial the gear that it is intended be worn at the horse's next race start.

Gelding of an Entire [10/12/2002]

Your attention is drawn to the provisions of LR12B and in particular the requirement for the owner or trainer to notify to the Stewards or Registrar of Racehorses within 14 days the gelding of an entire and the requirement to present the horses Document of Description for amendment. Notice is hereby given that failure to comply with this rule may lead to the person responsible being punished.

Heart Rate Meters [10/12/2002]

Trainers wishing to utilise heart-rate meters or other cardio-respiratory monitoring devices, with or without radiotelemetry, during the training of horses at a registered racetrack or registered training track are required to:

(1) Seek written permission from the Stewards to do so.

(2) Submit the apparatus to the Stewards for inspection by the TRB's Official Veterinary Surgeons.

(3) Notify the names of horses on which the apparatus is to be used.

(4) Notify the Steward attending track work or the track Official when the horse on which the apparatus is fitted is to work.

Under no circumstances are such devices to be used on horses during a race meeting or at any barrier trials.

Pre-Training of Racehorses [10/12/2002]

The NSW TRB Board advises all licensed trainers that the following conditions shall apply to the pre-training of racehorses:

(i) All horses being pre-trained must be returned to the registered stable premises of the notified trainer no later than two weeks prior to such horse trialing and no later than one month prior to racing.

(ii) The notified trainer must at all times acquaint the owner of a horse being pre-trained with full details of any pre-training arrangement, including a full disclosure of associated costs.

Treatment On Course [10/12/2002]

All treatments on race day including glycerine, Vicks Vapour Rub, magnetic field therapy blankets and lasers are not permitted. The use of ice packs is permissible after a horse has raced provided notice is given to the Official Veterinarian or Stipendiary Stewards.

Out of Competition Testing [9/7/2013]

In 2002 the Australian Racing Board introduced an important new Australian Rule of Racing which facilitates out of competition testing in the thoroughbred racing industry. The Rule is designed to assist in the control of use of substances that are considered to have no place in racing, such as the peptide hormones and illicit drugs. The substances to be tested out-of-competition, as well as their metabolites, isomers and artefacts, are specified in the Rule.

Although the Rule allows for the testing of a racehorse at any time whilst in training, out of competition testing will not apply to testing for the use of legitimate therapeutic substances within normal stable routines.

AR 177B. (1) When a sample taken at any time from a horse being trained by a licensed person has detected in it any prohibited substance specified in sub-rule (2):

(a) The trainer and any other person who was in charge of such horse at the relevant time may be penalised unless he satisfies the Stewards that he had taken all proper precautions to prevent the administration of such prohibited substance.

(b) The horse may be disqualified from any race in which it has competed subsequent to the taking of such a sample where, in the opinion of the Stewards, the prohibited substance was likely to have had any direct and/or indirect effect on the horse at the time of the race. [amended 1.9.09][sub-rule amended 1.6.11]

(2) For the purposes of subrule (1), the following substances are specified as prohibited substances:-

(a) erythropoiesis-stimulating agents, including but not limited to erythropoietin (EPO), epoetin alfa, epoetin beta, darbepoetin alfa, and methoxy polyethylene glycol-epoetin beta (Mircera),
(b) insulins,
(c) growth hormones,
(d) insulin-like growth factor-1,
(e) substances listed in Schedule 8 and Schedule 9 of the Standard for the Uniform Scheduling of Medicines and Poisons contained in the Australian Poisons Standard,
(f) selective androgen receptor modulators (SARMS),
(g) selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMS),
(h) selective opiate receptor modulators (SORMS),
(i) peroxisome proliferator activated receptor d (PPARd) agonists, including but not limited to GW 1516,
(j) AMPK activators, including but not limited to AICAR (5-amino-1- ß-D-ribofuranosyl-imidazole-4-carboxamide),
(k) other agents that directly or indirectly affect or manipulate gene expression,
(l) hypoxia inducible factor (HIF)-1 stabilisers, including but not limited to ITPP (myo-inositol trispyrophosphate),
(m) agents modifying myostatin function, including but not limited to myostatin inhibitors,
(n) oxygen carriers including but not limited to perfluorochemicals, efaproxiral and modified haemoglobin products,
(o) thymosin beta,
(p) venoms of any species or derivatives thereof,
(q) synthetic proteins and peptides and synthetic analogues of endogenous proteins and peptides not registered for medical or veterinary use,
(r) metabolites, artifacts and isomers of any of the substances specified in paragraphs (a)to(q).

(3) The Australian Racing Board may determine at any time any addition to this list of substances in subrule (2) and publish such additions in the Racing Calendar.

(4) The substances bufotenine, butorphanol, 3-(2-dimethylaminoethyl)-4-hydroxyindole, N,N-dimethyltryptamine, ketamine, methadone, morphine, pethidine and quinalbarbitone, and their metabolites, artifacts and isomers, are excepted from the provisions of this Rule, but would be specified as prohibited substances for the purposes of AR.175(h), AR.177, AR.177A, AR178 and AR.178A.

(5) If any substance or preparation that could give rise to an offence under this rule if administered to a horse at any time is found at any time at any premises used in relation to the training or racing of horses then any owner, trainer or person who owns, trains or races or is in charge of horses at those premises is deemed to have the substance or preparation in their possession and such person shall be guilty of an offence and liable to penalty.

(6) Any person who, in the opinion of the Stewards, administers, attempts to administer, causes to be administered or is a party to the administration of, any prohibited substance specified in subrule (2) to a horse being trained by a licensed trainer must be penalised in accordance with AR196(5).

It is important to note that legitimate therapeutic treatments are not affected by the introduction of this rule. When undertaking out of competition testing, Stewards will limit interference with training and stable routine wherever possible. Further, whilst horses that are spelling do not come within the ambit of the policy, a horse that is in training is subject to testing under this rule wherever it is located. The testing of yearlings will not be encompassed by the new Rule.

Trainers are still encouraged to submit samples for elective non-race day testing whenever they are uncertain of any horse's medication history prior to it entering their stables. Should any trainer have any queries concerning his or her responsibilities under this rule they should contact the Racing NSW Stewards or the Racing NSW Veterinary Department.

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