Horse Racing is the first major sport in the UK to use saliva tests on jockeys. They will use it to screen for banned substances. The British Horseracing Authority used urine, hair, and blood to test for prohibited substances in the past.
According to sports betting software reports, the regulator hopes to carry out more tests because saliva tests are cheaper. The BHA is working with the Professional Jockeys Association to conduct the pilot in spring.
The BHA hopes that it will improve its ability to protect horses and jockeys’ safety and well-being. According to bookie PPH sources, the BHA will allocate more funds for testing in 2021.
Saliva Tests on Jockeys
Last Thursday, the regulator banned jockey Philip Prince from racing for six months. He tested positive for cocaine at the Wolverhampton Races held last November 16, 2020. A BHA panel also found a high level of cocaine in Prince’s system.
The jockey admitted that he was a regular user of cocaine. Also, he used it three to four times each week. Prince used the drug as a pick-me-up and lifted his mood. The BHA highlighted the risks that jockeys face when riding horses under the influence of cocaine. They can also harm themselves, their horses, and other jockeys during races.
Prince apologized for his mistake. Also, he is undergoing a six-week rehab program. The jockey is attempting to rebuild his life and career after the drug scandal. Furthermore, he acknowledged that he would face enhanced testing if he chooses to ride again in the future.
If a jockey tests positive from saliva testing, he can’t ride for the day. The punishment is like when a jockey fails a breathalyzer test for alcohol. Also, the jockey would go through a confirmatory test for disciplinary purposes.
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