While I somewhat follow racing, I just don’t understand how Bob Baffert is constantly found to have administered an illegal substance to his horses. A second sample has to confirm someone gave betamethasone to Medina Spirit, but his record makes him look guilty. Can anyone explain this?
Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit failed a post-race drug test, once more putting the practices of his Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert under uncomfortable scrutiny.
The colt cannot be disqualified until a split sample confirms the result. Baffert will then have an opportunity to appeal. If disqualified, Medina Spirit would be stripped of the Derby title and the winning purse.
In a news conference Sunday morning outside of his barn at Churchill Downs, Baffert said neither he nor anyone on his team administered the drug betamethasone to Medina Spirit.
“I was totally shocked when I heard this news,” Baffert said. “I’m still trying to absorb it. I am the most scrutinized trainer. And I am okay with that. The last thing I want to do is something that would jeopardize the greatest sport.”
Medina Spirit tested positive for betamethasone, a corticosteroid injected into joints to reduce pain and swelling. It is the same substance found last year in Baffert’s Gamine after the filly finished third in the Kentucky Oaks. Gamine was disqualified and her owners were denied the purse for her third place finish. Baffert was fined $1,500.