Mo.-based company hired to police drugs in US horse racing
Kentucky Derby First Female Producer Horse Racing FILE - John Velazquez rides Medina Spirit across the finish line to win the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., May 1, 2021. The Kentucky Derby television broadcast will be produced by a woman for the first time in the 148-year-old history of the race. Lindsay Schanzer on Thursday, April 21, 2022, will be named senior producer of NBC Sports’ Derby coverage and oversee the network’s horse racing production. — (AP) — A deal for Drug Free Sport International to police medication in horse racing was announced Tuesday, two months before the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority takes effect. The anti-doping and medication rules aren’t expected to begin until Jan. 1, 2023, leaving the 38 states where horse racing occurs in charge for now.wftv.com
Medina Spirit stripped of Kentucky Derby victory
Kentucky Derby Medina Spirit Horse Racing FILE - John Velazquez riding Medina Spirit crosses the finish line to win the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., in this Saturday, May 1, 2021, file photo. Medina Spirit was stripped of the victory in last year’s Kentucky Derby and Mandaloun was declared the winner in a ruling by state racing stewards on Monday, Feb. 21, 2022. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File) (Jeff Roberson)Medina Spirit was stripped of the victory in last year’s Kentucky Derby and Mandaloun was declared the winner after a ruling by state racing stewards on Monday. Medina Spirit finished half a length ahead of Mandaloun in the race, giving trainer Bob Baffert what was then his seventh Kentucky Derby title. Following the announcement by the racing stewards, Churchill Downs issued a statement declaring Mandaloun the Kentucky Derby winner.wftv.com
Derby winner Medina Spirit collapses, dies in California
Medina Spirit Baffert Horse Racing FILE - John Velazquez rides Medina Spirit across the finish line to win the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky., May 1, 2021. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson, File) (Jeff Roberson)Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit collapsed and died after a workout Monday at Santa Anita. Medina Spirit tested positive after the May 1 Derby for betamethasone, a legal medication that is not allowed on race day. The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has been investigating the case, and has yet to hold a hearing that could possibly disqualify Medina Spirit. Medina Spirit had five wins in 10 career starts and earnings of $3,545,200, according to Equibase.wftv.com
Ky Derby champ Medina Spirit wins in comeback for Baffert
DEL MAR, Calif. — (AP) — Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit held off Rock Your World in the stretch to win the $100,000 Shared Belief by 1 1/4 lengths on Sunday at Del Mar for embattled trainer Bob Baffert. Ridden by John Velazquez, Medina Spirit ran a mile in 1:37.29. The colt, who beat Medina Spirit in the Santa Anita Derby in April, finished 17th in the Kentucky Derby and sixth in the Belmont Stakes. I can’t ask anything more of my horse.”Iowa Derby winner Stilleto Boy paid $3.80 to show. Medina Spirit tested positive for the corticosteroid betamethasone, which is not allowed on race day in Kentucky.wftv.com
Judge questions treatment of suspended horse trainer Baffert
U.S. District Judge Carol Bagley Amon at a Brooklyn hearing repeatedly pressed a lawyer for the racing association to explain why the suspension was issued before Baffert was given a chance to defend himself. Henry Greenberg, arguing on behalf of the racing association, said Baffert will get a hearing after the association announces the length of his suspension by Aug. 11. the judge asked, noting that the duration will be announced months after he was suspended. “Rarely in the history of the sport has there been such a confluence of drug positives involving so prominent a trainer,” association lawyers wrote in court papers. Churchill Downs suspended Baffert for two years after an additional drug test of Medina Spirit confirmed betamethasone in the horse's system.wftv.com
Horse racing has more questions than answers post-Preakness
Preakness Stakes Horse Race John Velazquez atop Medina Spirit, center left, leads the pack out of the gates during the 146th Preakness Stakes horse race at Pimlico Race Course, Saturday, May 15, 2021, in Baltimore. With the Belmont Stakes on June 5 wrapping up the Triple Crown series, the sport is filled with more questions than answers. Medina Spirit and fellow Baffert-trained Concert Tour each passed three rounds of pre-Preakness drug tests as a condition of being able to run. Medina Spirit finished third and Concert Tour a disappointing ninth in a 10-horse field. The New York Racing Association is offering a $1 million bonus if a horse based in Japan wins the Belmont.wftv.com
Rombauer pulls Preakness upset, Baffert's Medina Spirit 3rd
APTOPIX Preakness Stakes Horse Race Flavien Prat atop Rombauer crosses the finish line to win the Preakness Stakes horse race at Pimlico Race Course, Saturday, May 15, 2021, in Baltimore. All eyes were on Medina Spirit after he failed a post-Derby drug test for the presence of the steroid betamethasone. “I had to come out running to get my position,” Medina Spirit jockey John Velazquez said. Baffert was not in attendance, staying away because of the controversy with Medina Spirit, who still could be disqualified from the Derby. Maryland racing officials required Concert Tour and Medina Spirit undergo additional testing and monitoring as conditions to run in the Preakness.wftv.com
The Latest: Baffert says 'Today is not about Bob Baffert'
Baffert has two horses entered in the Preakness on Saturday but opted to stay away from Pimlico Race Course after the doping issue arose. Hand sanitizer stations are available around Pimlico Race Course, which feels empty compared to the usual crowd for the race. Medina Spirit is currently the 3-1 second choice and fellow Bob Baffert-trained Concert Tour next at 4-1. Steve Asmussen-trained Midnight Bourbon finished sixth in the Kentucky Derby ridden by 2018 Triple Crown-winning jockey Mike Smith, who switched mounts to Concert Tour. Baffert's Kentucky Derby-winning Medina Spirit was cleared Friday to run in the Preakness after undergoing three rounds of prerace testing.wftv.com
EXPLAINER: Derby winner's failed test latest in horse doping
If the violation is upheld after a second round of testing, Medina Spirit would be disqualified and second-place finisher Mandaloun named winner of the Kentucky Derby. It's the latest high-profile drug violation in horse racing, which was rocked last year by the indictments of two trainers and 25 others in a far-ranging doping scandal. Changes are coming to standardize medication in horse racing after years, but a law passed by the U.S. Congress doesn't go into effect until next year. The trainer, who has denied giving the steroid to Medina Spirit, has cited contamination as a reason for this and previous violations. The plan as of Monday was for Medina Spirit and Baffert's Concert Tour to travel to Baltimore for the Preakness.wftv.com
Medina Spirit heads to Preakness, minus trainer Bob Baffert
If the violation is upheld, Medina Spirit could be disqualified and runner-up Mandaloun elevated to winner. (Assistant trainer) Jimmy (Barnes) can handle it.”Whether he is in Baltimore or not, the focus right now is on Medina Spirit and Baffert. Medina Spirit and Concert Tour, who skipped the Derby, were being transported by van to Baltimore and scheduled to arrive late Monday. Medina Spirit was found to have 21 picograms of betamethasone, which is sometimes used to treat pain and inflammation in horses. I wish they would’ve called me.”With that, Baffert's hope is that Medina Spirit can make a strong showing in the Preakness and put the public skepticism to rest — for now.wftv.com
Medina Spirit could lose Ky. Derby win; track bans Baffert
Baffert denied all wrongdoing and promised to be fully transparent with the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission during its investigation. Baffert’s barn received word Saturday that Medina Spirit had tested positive for an excessive amount of the steroid betamethasone, which is sometimes used to treat pain and inflammation in horses. Medina Spirit is Baffert’s fifth horse known to have failed a drug test in just over a year. If Mandaloun is declared the Kentucky Derby winner, that would mean the Triple Crown pursuit for 2021 would end right there. Baffert was planning to saddle Medina Spirit and Concert Tour in the Preakness, going for a record eighth victory in that race.wftv.com
Ky. Derby winner faces disqualification; track bans Baffert
Baffert denied all wrongdoing and promised to be fully transparent with the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission during its investigation. Medina Spirit is Baffert’s fifth horse known to have failed a drug test in just over a year. If Mandaloun is declared the Kentucky Derby winner, that would mean the Triple Crown pursuit for 2021 would end right there. Baffert was planning to saddle Medina Spirit and Concert Tour in the Preakness, going for a record eighth victory in that race. But as Baffert insisted that horse racing can do better preventing doping, he also acknowledged the spotlight.wftv.com
Churchill Downs suspends Baffert after failed drug test
“Given the seriousness of the alleged offense, Churchill Downs will immediately suspend Bob Baffert, the trainer of Medina Spirit, from entering any horses at Churchill Downs Racetrack. Churchill Downs' announcement comes after Baffert announced the failed drug test, which he vowed to fight “tooth and nail.” Medina Spirit is Baffert's fifth horse to fail a drug test in a year. Baffert denied any wrongdoing and said he did not know how Medina Spirit could have tested positive. He said Medina Spirit has never been treated with betamethasone and called it “a complete injustice." Medina Spirit is still expected to race in the Preakness, the Triple Crown's second jewel, on Saturday.wftv.com
Baffert says Derby winner Medina Spirit tested positive
Baffert denied any wrongdoing and said he did not know how Medina Spirit could have tested positive. He said Medina Spirit has never been treated with betamethasone and called it “a complete injustice." Baffert said Medina Spirit has not yet been officially disqualified from the Kentucky Derby, though that still could happen after other tests and processes are completed. Medina Spirit is still expected to race in the Preakness, the Triple Crown’s second jewel, on Saturday. “There’s problems in racing,” Baffert said.wftv.com
Kentucky Derby, NFL draft pull in television viewers
Less than two weeks earlier the Academy Awards, once one of the most-watched events of the year, barely topped 10 million viewers. ABC had 3.2 million, NBC had 2.9 million, Fox had 2.1 million, Univision had 1.2 million, Ion Television had 1 million and Telemundo had 920,000. Fox News Channel led the cable networks, averaging 2.2 million viewers in prime time. ABC's “World News Tonight” won the evening news ratings race, averaging 7.4 million viewers. “NFL Draft, Round 1,” ESPN, 6.48 million.wftv.com
The Latest: Belmont Stakes to have at least 11,000 fans
The New York Racing Association says it will offer advance pre-sale options on Wednesday to people who bought tickets for last year’s Belmont Stakes, which was held without fans because of the global pandemic. NYRA says that required mandatory seating and social distancing will limit tickets to reserved seats and hospitality areas. All fans must submit proof of completed vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test to get in. The Kentucky Derby had attendance of 51,838 last weekend. Last year’s event at Keeneland in Kentucky also was held without fans because of the global pandemic.wftv.com
Baffert mulling Medina Spirit's next step after Derby win
Not to mention a chance for redemption for competitors that fell short to Medina Spirit. Meanwhile, Brad Cox planned to talk with connections for runner-up Mandaloun and 5-2 Derby favorite Essential Quality, who finished fourth. After a head-scratching sixth in the Louisiana Derby, Mandaloun provided a pleasant surprise on Saturday by chasing Medina Spirit down the stretch before falling half a length short. “He ran a huge race, very proud of his effort, he and Mandaloun,” Cox said. Medina Spirit quickly set the line behind him and didn’t relent despite pressure, covering the 1 1/4 miles in 2:01.02.wftv.com
The Latest: Medina Spirit gives Baffert record 7th Derby win
___3:40 p.m.A plane circling above Churchill Downs is flying a banner reading “Protect Black Women. ___3:05 p.m.Bob Baffert saddled Gamine to a 1 1/2-length victory in the $500,000 Derby City Distaff at Churchill Downs, giving the trainer his record 220th Grade 1 stakes win. I always enjoy Derby, but this year it seems like everybody appreciates everything so much more.”___1:10 p.m.A Houston furniture dealer who owns horses is placing a big-money bet on the Kentucky Derby. McIngvale will place the bet in person at Churchill Downs rather than through a legal bookmaker. He also collaborated with Churchill Downs to bring about 300 foster parents, alumni and social service workers to the Derby.wftv.com
Medina Spirit gives Baffert record 7th Kentucky Derby win
Kentucky Derby Horse Racing John Velazquez, right, rides Medina Spirit ahead of Florent Geroux aboard Mandaloun to win the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, Saturday, May 1, 2021, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) (Darron Cummings)LOUISVILLE, Ky. — (AP) — Medina Spirit fought off three challengers in the stretch to win the Kentucky Derby by a half-length, making Bob Baffert the winningest trainer in the race’s 147-year history with seven. Medina Spirit ran 1 1/4 miles in 2:01.02. Baffert won back-to-back, having tied Ben Jones with his sixth win last year when the Derby was run in September without spectators because of the coronavirus pandemic. He also completed the Kentucky Oaks-Derby double for the first time since 2009, having won the race for fillies on Friday. The Derby went off under a blue sky with attendance of 51,838 — about 100,000 fewer than usual.wftv.com
Horse racing hopes for return to normal, with fans, in 2021
John Velazquez, right, rides Authentic to win the Breeder's Cup Classic horse race at Keeneland Race Course, in Lexington, Ky., Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020. Many of its best competitors performed at the top of their games on a record-breaking weekend, sparking high expectations for 2021. The sport just hopes that next year’s schedule returns to normal and that spectators can be in the grandstands enjoying the races. So, I miss the fans.”“I’ll be glad when everything gets back to normal and we have the fans back," he said. “We had a reason to smile again in horse racing and show off to people who were watching what a beautiful sport it is with the excitement and the nervousness," Baffert said.
Authentic goes wire-to-wire to win Breeders' Cup Classic
John Velazquez (9) rides Authentic to win the Breeder's Cup Classic horse race at Keeneland Race Course, in Lexington, Ky., Saturday, Nov. 7, 2020. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)LEXINGTON, Ky. – From start to finish, Authentic left no doubt he was the horse to beat in the Breeders’ Cup Classic. Her second Cup win in three years followed a big upset in the Mile by Order of Australia. Another Irish bred, Tarnawa, won the $4 million Breeders' Cup Turf immediately before the Classic with Colin Keane in Soumillon's place. The 18-1 choice saved his best for last as he stormed outside from near the rail in the stretch to win by 3¼ lengths and earn his first Breeders’ Cup win in four starts.
Improbable is 5-2 favorite for Breeders' Cup Classic
8 post position for the Breeders’ Cup Classic and is the 5-2 morning line favorite for the marquee race of the season-ending World Championships at Keeneland. Kentucky Derby champion Authentic, a Baffert pupil who held off Tiz the Law in a wire-to-wire victory at Churchill, will go off at 6-1 from the No. I can’t do any more for him.”Filly Swiss Skydiver, who won last month's Preakness against males and was a Classic pre-entry, opted to run against her own gender in Breeders' Cup Distaff over 1 1/8 miles. “She was 11 of 11 in the Breeders’ Cup in 2018," he said. 7 post for Breeders’ Cup Juvenile that cap Friday’s five-race feature card for 2-year-olds.
Winning filly: Swiss Skydiver beats Authentic in Preakness
"She’s just such a special filly," said trainer Kenny McPeek, who won the Preakness for the first time for his second Triple Crown race victory. “I had an opportunity,” said Albarado, who won his second Preakness after 2007 aboard Curlin. Swiss Skydiver was the first filly to run in the Preakness since 2014, when Ria Antonia finished last. “That’s a good filly,” said Authentic and Thousand Words trainer Bob Baffert, who was denied a record-breaking eighth Preakness victory. Swiss Skydiver made it so each Triple Crown race in 2020 had a different winner.
House approves bill to combat doping in horse racing
The “Horseracing Integrity and Safety Act” comes after a series of doping scandals and a rash of horse fatalities in recent years. "Horse racing has long been woven into the fabric of American culture,'' Tonko said during House debate, citing storied names such as Secretariat and Man o' War that “stir the imagination of racing fans” around the world. The House bill would empower an independent Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority to set uniform, national standards for medication, track safety and testing of horses for performance-enhancing drugs, or PEDs. The legislation is supported by a range of groups, including The Jockey Club, the New York Racing Association and the Humane Society of the United States. “Horse racing is experiencing the most profound crisis in the long history of the sport.
Authentic's future could include rematch against Tiz the Law
Bob Bafferts latest star achieved that by blowing past Kentucky Derby favorite Tiz the Law to win going away Saturday at Churchill Downs. Though Authentic shattered hopes for a Triple Crown winner this year, he raised questions about what hell do for an encore, which could include a possible rematch against Tiz the Law at the Preakness in Baltimore on Oct. 3. There figures to be other well-rested horses to contend with, though Baffert touted Tiz the Law as a formidable foe at Pimlico Race Course. But those options are for later, and Baffert is happy that Authentic emerged from the Derby in good shape. Right now, at the end of the day Tiz the Law is still going to be tough.
Authentic wins Ky. Derby, gives Baffert tying 6th victory
Authentic won by 1 1/4 lengths without the usual crowd of 150,000 on hand at Churchill Downs because of the coronavirus pandemic. The bay colt ran 1 1/4 miles in 2:00.61 under John Velazquez, who earned his third Derby victory. Sent off at 3-5 as the biggest Derby favorite in 31 years, Tiz the Law stalked Authentic on the outside before challenging at the top of the stretch. Yes! Baffert shouted in the paddock, where he watched the race on the video screen. Tiz the Law had already won the Belmont, the kickoff to the reconfigured Triple Crown that was run in June at a shorter distance.
Long shot Shedaresthedevil pulls off upset in Kentucky Oaks
Florent Geroux rides Shedaresthedevil, second left, and John Velazquez rides Gamine, right, going into the first turn during the 146th running of the Kentucky Oaks at Churchill Downs, Friday, Sept. 4, 2020, in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)LOUISVILLE, Ky. Long shot Shedaresthedevil won the Kentucky Oaks in record time, overtaking favorite Gamine at the top of the stretch and holding off Swiss Skydiver for a 1 1/2-length victory Friday in the 146th Kentucky Oaks for fillies at Churchill Downs. 7 post, staying within reach of the heavily favored Gamine before coming on near the final turn and gaining the lead entering the stretch. Once ahead, she turned it up more with Florent Geroux aboard, pulling away from Swiss Skydiver and rolling to victory in the $1.25 million marquee event. Swiss Skydiver, who started along the rail, returned $3.80 and $2.60. Postponed from May along with the Kentucky Derby because of coronavirus concerns, the Oaks went off on a hot, sunny day without spectators.
Tiz the Law draws No. 8 post as early 6-5 Belmont favorite
It wasn't quite the post position trainer Barclay Tagg wanted for Tiz the Law. Still, it wasn't far off for the colt who on Wednesday was made the early 6-5 favorite for the Belmont Stakes. Tagg was hoping the Florida Derby winner would land anywhere between spots 5 to 7 in the starting gate for Saturday's beginning of the reconfigured Triple Crown series. Tiz the Law drew the No. He likes this track, so I'm glad to be back on it.Instead of concluding the Triple Crown, the Belmont is kicking off the series.