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The Animal Wellness Podcast: U.S. Harness Racing: A Struggling Enterprise Grapples with Animal Wellness and Doping

Horses | Harness Racing | Doping

Shutterstock Photo ID: 606036098 Horses trotter breed in motion on hippodrome. Harness horse racing.

The U.S. Trotting Association (USTA) and those in the industry who want to keep doping alive and maintain the status quo have gone to great lengths despite the conviction of numerous criminals...”
— Marty Irby, executive director at Animal Wellness Action

WASHINGTON, DC, UNITED STATES , October 5, 2022 / -- American horse racing has been in peril for quite some time. As a member of the Coalition for Horseracing Integrity, Animal Wellness Action has been working to stamp out doping and whipping in the sport, and bring an end to horse slaughter as well. With the enactment of the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act in 2020 that took effect July 1st of this year, we’re finally on the right track.

Unfortunately, rogue operators and horse racing insiders who’ve flouted state laws and regulations for years continue to work against proper implementation and enforcement of the new law. One of the key areas we’ve met the most resistance is in the world of harness racing, a lesser known division of the sport that’s quickly dwindling into obscurity. The U.S. Trotting Association (USTA) and those in the industry who want to keep doping alive and maintain the status quo have gone to great lengths despite the conviction of numerous criminals involved in harness racing.

But there is hope thanks to the good apples in American harness racing like the U.S. Harness Racing Alumni Association and our good friend and coalition partner Freddie Hudson, a retired trainer, author, and founder and CEO of the group. Freddie’s been the key ally that’s made the most difference in this area and is creating awareness and bringing newcomers into the fold with our efforts.

In this episode of the Animal Wellness Podcast, host Joseph Grove and Marty Irby, executive director of Animal Wellness Action, and editor of, interview Hudson and the episode gives listeners some key insight into the latest happenings on this issue.

Click here to listen to this edition of the Animal Wellness Podcast.

Animal Wellness Action is a Washington, D.C.-based 501(c)(4) organization with a mission of helping animals by promoting legal standards forbidding cruelty. We champion causes that alleviate the suffering of companion animals, farm animals, and wildlife. We advocate for policies to stop dogfighting and cockfighting and other forms of malicious cruelty and to confront factory farming and other systemic forms of animal exploitation. To prevent cruelty, we promote enacting good public policies and we work to enforce those policies. To enact good laws, we must elect good lawmakers, and that’s why we remind voters which candidates care about our issues and which ones don’t. We believe helping animals helps us all.

Marty Irby
Animal Wellness Action
+1 202-821-5686
email us here
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Marty Irby joins Freddie Hudson on July 7, 2022 on the Harness Racing Alumni Show

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