Bob Baffert to once more miss Kentucky Derby; decide upholds ban

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A federal decide denied Bob Baffert’s request to elevate his two-year suspension by Churchill Downs Inc., ruling Friday that the Hall of Fame coach didn’t show its self-discipline harm his enterprise and popularity.

Baffert will miss his second consecutive Kentucky Derby, and per a Churchill Downs rule, he has till Feb. 28 to switch his Derby-eligible horses to different trainers to ensure that them to probably run within the May 6 race.

Baffert final yr transferred Taiba and Messier to former assistant Tim Yakteen for the Derby. Taiba completed twelfth and Messier was fifteenth amongst 20 horses.

Baffert had sued Churchill Downs following his banishment in June 2021 after a failed postrace drug take a look at by now-deceased colt Medina Spirit, who crossed the end line first within the 147th Derby. The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission finally disqualified the colt in February 2022 and suspended Baffert for 90 days for a collection of failed exams by his horses.

Baffert argued that Churchill Downs didn’t give him discover nor clarify the suspension. His legal professional, Clark Brewster, contended earlier this month that the historic monitor was topic to state pointers for due course of. U.S. District Court Judge Rebecca Grady Jennings finally rejected that argument and stated that, as privately owned firm, Churchill Downs can set its personal disciplinary insurance policies.

While Baffert is banned from the primary of the Triple Crown races, he is eligible to run horses in Maryland on the Preakness and in New York on the Belmont Stakes. His one-year suspension by the New York Racing Association expired in January.

Read also  World Baseball Classic opener reside updates: Cuba vs. Netherlands

Churchill Downs had wished the case dismissed, citing 9 failed exams by Baffert-trained horses as justification for disciplining horse racing’s most seen determine. The listing of violators contains 2020 Kentucky Oaks third-place finisher Gamine, who was finally disqualified.

Medina Spirit failed his take a look at for having in his system the regulated remedy corticosteroid betamethasone, which Baffert and Brewster have argued got here from an ointment slightly than an injection.

Track president Mike Anderson stated the choice by Churchill Downs CEO Bill Carstanjen stemmed from Baffert’s “refusal to take responsibility for repeat violations.”