The New York Racing Affiliation (NYRA) has suspended Bob Baffert, barring his horses from the Belmont Stakes in addition to any occasion at Belmont Park or Saratoga Race Course this summer time.
The NYRA mentioned in an announcement that the suspension is just not a response to Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit testing constructive for betamethasone earlier this month. Moderately, the choice takes “under consideration the truth that different horses educated by Mr. Baffert have failed drug exams within the current previous, ensuing within the evaluation of penalties in opposition to him by thoroughbred racing regulators in Kentucky, California, and Arkansas.”
“With the intention to preserve a profitable thoroughbred racing business in New York, NYRA should defend the integrity of the game for our followers, the betting public and racing members,” NYRA President Dave O’Rourke mentioned in an announcement. “That accountability calls for the motion taken right now in the very best pursuits of thoroughbred racing.”
The Corridor of Fame coach’s horses have accomplished the Triple Crown on the Belmont Stakes twice within the final six years, however Medina Spirit’s loss on the Preakness final weekend ended Baffert’s probabilities at one other Triple Crown.
Medina Spirit handed three rounds of blood pattern testing forward of the Preakness, the place it completed third behind Rombauer and Midnight Bourbon. Churchill Downs additionally suspended Baffert after Medina Spirit examined constructive for 21 picograms of betamethasone, the fifth constructive drug check by a Baffert horse within the final 14 months.
Baffert later mentioned the supply of the constructive check could have come from an antifungal ointment referred to as Otomax used to deal with a rash previous to the Kentucky Derby. Churchill Downs is at present ready on a break up pattern—affirmation of the constructive check would disqualify the horse and crown runner-up Mandaloun because the winner.
The NYRA additionally mentioned that it’ll await these outcomes earlier than making a closing dedication on Baffert’s short-term suspension.
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