Championing Change in Horse Racing: Insights into the Shift to Category 1

Aug. 24, 2023
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The 2023 Global Symposium on Racing will address the adoption of rules governing how racetrack stewards demote a horse for interference during a race. While most international racing jurisdictions have transitioned away from Category 2 (which permitted the demotion of a horse for interfering with a rival at nearly any point in a race), the United States has been slower to embrace this new approach. Consequently, bettors worldwide may encounter inconsistencies in the adjudication of race interference as international simulcasts continue to expand rapidly.

The Symposium panel will include Kim Kelly, a leading authority on the global harmonization of interference rules. As the Chairman of the International Harmonisation of Racing Rules Committee of the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities, Kelly played a pivotal role in promoting the shift to Category 1 in Japan, France, Germany, South America, and most recently, the state of Oklahoma.

Kelly Cathey, the former Executive Director of the Oklahoma Horse Racing Commission and current Director of Racing at Remington Park, led Oklahoma’s move from Category 2 to Category 1. Cathey will discuss the process they followed including the training for Oklahoma stewards and the messaging to their customers preceding the change.

Tonya Boulmetis, Deputy Director of the Ohio State Racing Commission, will discuss the current plans that Ohio is undertaking to move from Category 2 to Category 1.

The panel will be moderated by Scott Chaney, Executive Director of the California Horse Racing Board, who will share his insights into the positives and negatives of Category 1 and Category 2 rules.

The 2023 Symposium will be held at Loews Ventana Canyon from December 4-6. You can now Register for this year’s Symposium and book your room at Loews Ventana Canyon, the host hotel.  More information can be found by visiting