More than 40 racing officials who will serve as stewards at the National Steeplechase Association’s spring race meets and presenters attended a continuing-education
seminar at the NSA’s Fair Hill, Md., headquarters on Wednesday, Feb. 20.
The day-long sessions included a detailed briefing by R. Reynolds Cowles, D.V.M., on the work of the Steeplechase Safety Task Force. Dr. Cowles serves as the chairman of the task force, which began its work in December and is developing strategies to augment the NSA’s safety protocols.
Bernard J. Hettel, executive director of the Virginia Racing Commission, reviewed procedures for pari-mutuel wagering at the commonwealth’s steeplechase meets. The Virginia Gold Cup is adding pari-mutuel wagering in early May.
Duncan Patterson, chairman of the Racing Commissioners International and an NSA member, reviewed the state of medication issues in Thoroughbred racing. Gregg Morris, NSA senior steward, presented on baseline testing requirements for steeplechase jockeys.
The continuing-education sessions are part of the NSA’s participation in the Racing Officials Accreditation Program. Two NSA continuing-education seminars for stewards are held annually, and the second will be held in the fall.