Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

27 horse racing employees (trainers, veterinarians and others) were charged Monday in a "widespread, corrupt" doping scheme that cheated the betting public and likely contributed to the rise in racetrack fatalities.

The state of play: Among those charged was Jason Servis, the trainer of Maximum Security, the horse that won last year's Kentucky Derby but was disqualified for impeding the path of two other horses.

  • "Maximum Security went on to win four of his next five races — including the $10 million first-place check last month in the world's richest race: the Saudi Cup at the King Abdulaziz racecourse in Riyadh," per the New York Times.

Why it matters: This scandal comes amid a time of increased scrutiny on the horse racing industry, particularly in the U.S., where fatal racetrack injuries have been on the rise.

  • Nearly 10 horses died per week at U.S. racetracks in 2018, per the Jockey Club's Equine Injury Database, and California's Santa Anita Park, alone, has seen 40 deaths since December 2018.

Between the lines: The horses were "force-fed all manner of illegal and experimental drugs" that allowed them to run unnaturally fast and mask pain, often leading to injuries or death due to overexertion.

What they're saying:

"It's sad to know that there are people who are prepared to go to these lengths to cheat in our sport. ... If it happened in any sport it would be disappointing, and when you're talking about horses being put at risk, it's even more troubling."
— Longtime trainer Graham Motion, per WashPost

What to watch: This should build momentum around the Horseracing Integrity Act, which would establish an independent organization to regulate medication policy in horse racing.

Go deeper: 32nd horse dies at Santa Anita Park

Go deeper

Biden clarifies comments on African American and Latino communities

Joe Biden delivering a speech in Delaware in July. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

Joe Biden explained on Twitter Thursday night what he "meant" by earlier comments suggesting that "the African American community is a monolith."

What they're saying: "Unlike the African-American community, with notable exceptions, the Latino community is an incredibly diverse community with incredibly different attitudes about different things," Biden remarked in an interview hosted by the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and the National Association for Black Journalists, Politico reports.

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Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tests negative for coronavirus after positive result

Photo: Justin Merriman/Getty Images

Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine (R) tested negative for the coronavirus after initially testing positive earlier Thursday, his office announced.

Why it matters: 73-year-old DeWine was set to meet President Trump Thursday on the tarmac at an airport in Cleveland and was tested as part of standard protocol.

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Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9:30 p.m. ET: 18,996,008 — Total deaths: 712,476— Total recoveries — 11,478,835Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9:30 p.m. ET: 4,877,115 — Total deaths: 159,990 — Total recoveries: 1,598,624 — Total tests: 59,652,675Map.
  3. Politics: Pelosi rips GOP over stimulus negotiations: "Perhaps you mistook them for somebody who gives a damn" — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine tests positive.
  4. Public health: Majority of Americans say states reopened too quicklyFauci says task force will examine aerosolized spread Study finds COVID-19 antibodies prevalent in NYC health care workers.
  5. Business: The health care sector imploded in Q2More farmers are declaring bankruptcyJuly's jobs report could be an inflection point for the recovery.
  6. Sports: Where college football's biggest conferences stand on playing.