Wednesday, 03 August 2016 20:11

CPMA Policy Paper P-006

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Policy Statement

In the interest of fairness and transparency, the Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency (CPMA) will release sample residue, when available, for independent analysis (herein called "referee analysis") when a request is made within 21 calendar days from the date of issue of the Certificate of Positive Analysis.


When an owner or trainer has been issued a Certificate of Positive Analysis, they may wish to obtain a referee analysis of any existing sampler residue. This policy paper describes the time limitation and process requirements by which the CPMA will authorize the release of existing residue of an official sample.


The CPMA provides a sample residue release program to owners or trainers of race horses that have been issued a Certificate of Positive Analysis and would like a referee analysis performed on the sample. Provided there is residue of the sample, CPMA will retain the official sample for up to 21 calendar days during which time the owner or trainer (the Originator) may make a request in writing for the release of the sample residue.

A request for the release of an official sample residue must be made by the Originator to the Provincial Regulator Body (PRB) within 21 calendar days from the date of issue indicated on the Certificate of Positive Analysis. All requests are to be made in writing and must include the name and address of the chosen referee laboratory and include confirmation that the referee laboratory will accept and analyze the sample for the drug indicated in the Certificate of Positive Analysis. Also, payment in full must be received within 21 calendar days by the official laboratory for the shipping and handling related to the transportation of the sample residue to the referee laboratory.

The CPMA will only accept requests that meet the above requirements. Sample residue will be destroyed if a completed request is not received and payment for shipping and handling has not been made within the 21 calendar days.


The CPMA is under no obligation to ensure that sample residue is available for referee analysis. Where the Official Laboratory has used the entire official sample during their analysis, the Originator and PRB are notified at the time of the request that no residue is available for a referee analysis. They may, however, request the container(s) that held the official sample."

An official sample that has been classified as positive and has existing residue may only be released to the Originator for referee analysis as it relates to issuance of the Certificate of Positive Analysis. All costs associated for shipping and handling are to be paid to Maxxam Analytics International Corporation (Maxxam) by the Originator before the end of the 21 calendar days.

Appendix "A" outlines the roles and responsibilities of each party involved and the sequence of events to be followed should an official sample be released.

Appendix "B" provides a step-by-step guideline for the Originator. As mentioned, the Originator is responsible for all costs associated with the process and for identifying a laboratory that is willing and able to conduct the referee analysis. Consequently, the costs associated for the referee laboratory analysis, results and report is the responsibility of the Originator.

Additional Information

The CPMA recommends that referee laboratories be accredited by a recognized national accrediting body under ISO/IEC 17025, and is also known as a laboratory that does analysis on equine samples. It should also be noted that not all accredited laboratories offer the same scope of testing. The persons seeking referee laboratory analysis is responsible for confirming the referee laboratory's eligibility and willingness to test for s particular drug or substance before making shipping arrangements

There is the possibility that the results from the referee analysis m ay differ from the original analysis. There are many factors that may affect the stability or integrity of a drug or substance found in an official sample, such as:

  • The drug's stability and deterioration rate may vary in a blood sample relative to a urine sample;
  • The referee laboratory may not be accredited under ISO/IEC 17025;
  • The referee laboratory may use a different method of analysis;
  • Samples may also deteriorate rapidly, hindering the detectability of the drug; and
  • Circumstances beyond the control of the Official Laboratory, such as power failures and the possibility of degradation of the drug, blood or urine, may render re-analysis for the drug impossible.
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