The Ohio State Racing Commission (OSRC) adopted a resolution on March 23 which established thresholds and penalties for cobalt violations, effective April 15, the day testing begins for cobalt at all Ohio racetracks.

Cobalt is a trace mineral found in B vitamins that horses require in tiny amounts for correct functioning of their physiology. As a result, all horses will have trace amounts of the substance in their systems. However, some horsemen believe that supplementing the substance will help their horses gain a competitive advantage on the track.

The OSRC resolution states that:

  • Cobalt concentrations of less than 25 ppb (parts per billion) in blood serum or plasma will have no penalty.
  • For cobalt concentrations of 25 ppb or greater but less than 50 ppb in blood serum or plasma, the recommended penalty is a written warning.
  • For cobalt concentrations of 50 ppb or greater in blood serum or plasma, the recommended penalty is a B penalty from the Association of Racing Commissioners International’s Uniform Classification Guidelines for Foreign Substances and Recommended Penalties and Model Rules Version 11.0 (for a first offence, a minimum 15-day suspension, $500 fine, and loss of purse; for a second offence, a minimum 30-day suspension, $1,000 fine, and loss of purse; and for a third offence, a Minimum 60-day suspension, $1,000 fine, loss of purse, and referred to the OSRC for further action).
  • Any cobalt concentration exceeding 250 ppb in blood serum or plasma will be referred to the OSRC for further action.
  • For cobalt concentrations of 25 ppb or greater in blood serum or plasma, the r