#US RACING: Medina Spirit passes first Preakness drug test

Medina Spirit
Medina Spirit

A sample drawn of Medina Spirit last Thursday by the Maryland Horse Racing Commission has come back clear for both prohibited and therapeutic substances, according to a statement released by the Maryland Jockey Club and parent company 1/ST Racing.

Further samples were taken from Medina Spirit on both Monday and Tuesday ahead of Saturday's Preakness Stakes. The results of those tests are expected to be known on Friday by 3 p.m. EDT.

Below is a release from the MJC and 1st/Racing, edited for clarity:

"Per the condition of entry agreement for the Preakness Stakes between the Maryland Jockey Club and trainer Bob Baffert reached earlier this week, Baffert trained horses Medina Spirit, Concert Tour and Beautiful Gift underwent three rounds of out-of-competition blood sample testing. The Maryland Racing Commission (MRC) took two samples, one on May 6 and the other on Monday. A third sample was taken by 1/ST RACING and the Maryland Jockey Club (MJC) on Tuesday.

"Samples drawn on May 6 and Monday by the MRC were sent to Industrial Laboratories in Colorado, while the samples drawn by 1/ST RACING and MJC on Tuesday were sent to the University of California at Davis Maddy Laboratory.

"The May 6 samples were screened for both prohibited and therapeutic substances and were reported clear for all horses on May 13 by Industrial Laboratories.

"Results for the samples taken on Monday and Tuesday will be available on Friday, May 14 and are expected by 3:00 pm ET in advance of the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (G2) for which Beautiful Gift is currently entered. The outcome of those results will be announced publicly by 1/ST RACING and MJC upon receipt.

"Consistent with the fair procedures and practices established by 1/ST RACING and MJC, the additional tests and monitoring are being conducted as part of the rigorous condition of entry agreement to ensure the fairness and integrity of the races with horses entered by Baffert, which are the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes and the 146th Preakness Stakes.

“'1/ST RACING is committed to achieving the highest level of horse care and safety standards in Thoroughbred racing. We have been an industry leader in instituting processes and protocols that have led to nationwide medication reform and increased accountability and transparency,' said Craig Fravel, chief executive officer, 1/ST RACING. 'While we acknowledge the challenging circumstances that prompted this further need for transparency, it reflects, above all else, that the principles of integrity, accountability, and safety in our sport are non-negotiable.'

"In addition to third-round sampling, the medical records for all Baffert trained horses have been reviewed by Dr. Dionne Benson, Chief Veterinary Officer, 1/ST RACING.  Baffert has provided medical records covering the period of April 1 through May 10. Medical records for Medina Spirit reflected the dispensing of Otomax on April 9 and April 19. Otomax is a legal, topical ointment used off-label to treat dermatitis in racehorses. Medina Spirit’s medical records were compared to confidential veterinary records obtained from the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) which were submitted within 24 hours of those dates and have been verified.

"Baffert also voluntarily submitted radiographs of Medina Spirit’s fetlocks (ankles) and carpi (knees) which his veterinarian took at Pimlico on Wednesday.  These radiographs were reviewed by the Maryland Equine Medical Director, 1/ST RACING’s Chief Veterinary Officer, and a Diplomat of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons that consults with 1/ST RACING and MJC.  All three veterinarians independently determined the radiographs showed no abnormal findings.


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