Darley COO Tait resigns from Breeders’ Cup board over Lasix policy

Oliver Tait, chief operating officer of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum’s Darley operation, issued a release Sunday announcing his resignation from the Breeders’ Cup board due to its position to backtrack on a previously announced policy regarding the race-day use of the anti-bleeder medication Lasix.

Breeders’ Cup announced Friday it was rescinding its plan to bar the use Lasix in all of its race for the 2013 World Championships and instead would stick to its 2012 policy of only banning Lasix for those horses competing in its juvenile races.

Below is the statement issued by Tait:

“The Breeders’ Cup has reversed its previously agreed and stated position that the 2013 Breeders’ Cup World Championships will be conducted without Lasix. As a consequence, I have resigned from the board of the Breeders’ Cup.

“Sheikh Mohammed, Darley’s principal, has been one of the biggest players in American racing for the last 30 years. His vision for the sport in America is a future where racing is enjoyed and admired by a new generation of participants and enthusiasts. A true world championship, to be enjoyed and admired by all, needs to be medication free.

“Progress is being made in all sports around the world in relation to drugs. This is not progress. The Breeders’ Cup is a leader of this sport, and I was extremely proud to serve on its board. Having rightly and boldly chosen to lead the way on the issue of drugs in racing in 2011, it has now stepped back in time. I hope that in the near future it can lead again.”