Medina Spirit is the Preakness Favourite, However Colt Should Take a look at Clear to Run

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Posted on: Might 11, 2021, 11:35h. 

Final up to date on: Might 11, 2021, 11:35h.

Medina Spirit, the colt whose Kentucky Derby win lower than two weeks in the past hangs within the stability due to a failed drug take a look at, was allowed to enter Saturday’s Preakness Stakes due to an settlement reached between coach Bob Baffert and the Maryland Jockey Membership.

Medina Spirit Preakness
Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit walks out of the van on Monday that transported him and two different Bob Baffert-trained horses to Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore. An settlement reached on Tuesday permits the horses to run this weekend, supplied they go a pre-race drug take a look at. (Picture: Pimlico Race Course)

However similar to that Derby win, Medina Spirit’s Preakness entry additionally isn’t on stable floor. Beneath the settlement, blood for pre-race testing was taken from the colt and two different horses Baffert plans to run on the Baltimore monitor this weekend. A failed take a look at implies that horse received’t run.

“The integrity of the game is of the upmost significance to Mr. Baffert and by consenting to this testing routine and monitoring he affirms his dedication and dedication to the game,” wrote Craig Robertson, Baffert’s lawyer, in a letter to MJC lawyer Alan Rifkin.

There have been requires Pimlico and Maryland racing officers to comply with the lead of Churchill Downs and ban Baffert from coming into his horses in the intervening time.

Craig Fravel, CEO of Pimlico-owner 1/ST Racing (often known as The Stronach Group), stated in an announcement the corporate shares the priority about equine security. Nonetheless, the monitor additionally desires to comply with established protocols, and since Baffert has but to be sanctioned by the Kentucky Horse Racing Fee, officers let him enter horses with the famous contingency.

“We can’t make issues up as we go alongside, and we belief that the rivals, bettors and followers will perceive the significance of adhering to that precept,” he stated.

Baffert Backpedals on Betamethasone Declare

Earlier than the settlement was introduced, Baffert made an astonishing assertion Tuesday morning, claiming Medina Spirit obtained every day ointment purposes that contained betamethasone, the anti-inflammatory agent that triggered the failed post-race take a look at after the Derby.

Baffert stated the failed take a look at confirmed a discovering of 21 picograms per milliliter. In Kentucky, the brink is 10 picograms per milliliter.

On Sunday, when Baffert broke the information of the failed take a look at, he claimed reasonably adamantly that he by no means ordered that drug for Medina Spirit. Tuesday’s assertion backtracked these preliminary feedback to an extent, with the corridor of fame coach saying an inside investigation decided a doable supply.

Medina Spirit developed a rash on his hind finish after his second-place end in final month’s Santa Anita Derby. Baffert had his veterinarian test the colt, and the physician really helpful Otomax, an anti-fungal ointment, to comprise the rash and supply reduction.

Beneath the vet’s directions, Baffert’s workers utilized the topical therapy every day till the day earlier than the Kentucky Derby.

Yesterday, I used to be knowledgeable that one of many substances in Otomax is betamethasone,” he stated. “Whereas we have no idea definitively that this was the supply of the alleged 21 picograms (per millimeter) present in Medina Spirit’s post-race blood pattern, and our investigation is constant, I’ve been advised by equine pharmacology consultants that this might clarify the take a look at outcomes.”

He added, although, that his investigation continues, and the acknowledgment doesn’t imply he considers the preliminary take a look at outcomes to be correct.

The Kentucky Horse Racing Fee can also be persevering with its investigation into the matter. Ought to the break up pattern confirm the preliminary constructive take a look at, then Medina Spirit’s homeowners could lose the $1.8 million in purse cash and the colt could possibly be stripped of the win.

Proprietor Stands Behind Embattled Coach

Whereas Baffert has obtained loads of criticism inside the racing group and from outsiders in regards to the Medina Spirit incident and a report of alleged drug violations, one one who stays in his nook is Medina Spirit’s proprietor.

On Tuesday, an lawyer for Amr F. Zedan issued an announcement on his behalf saying he nonetheless helps Baffert.

“I’ve reviewed the image of the rash and totally perceive the necessity for care and the nice religion intentions in utilizing the ointment provided by the veterinarian,” the assertion learn.

Medina Spirit the Morning-Line Preakness Favourite

The settlement was reached simply hours earlier than Pimlico officers held the submit place draw for the second jewel within the Triple Crown. And regardless of the controversy, Medina Spirit was put in on the 9-5 morning-line favourite after drawing the third submit for Saturday’s race.

Barnmate Live performance Tour drew the skin gate within the 10-horse area and has morning-line odds of 5-2. His entry can also be contingent on passing a pre-race drug take a look at, as is Lovely Woman, Baffert’s entry in Friday’s Black-Eyed Susan.

Whereas his horses are in Baltimore, Baffert selected to fly dwelling to California from Louisville, saying he didn’t wish to be a distraction on the race.

In addition to Medina Spirit, solely two different horses that ran within the Derby made the trek to Baltimore. One among them, Midnight Bourbon, is prone to be a first-rate contender to the Baffert pair.

Skilled by Steve Asmussen, the Tiznow-sired colt completed sixth within the Derby, however he was in 14th place with a half-mile to go.

Apart from the Run for the Roses, Midnight Bourbon has completed within the cash in every of his different seven races, however his final win got here in January within the Lecomte Stakes. His morning-line odds are 5-1.

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