The entire North American horse racing community is poised and waiting for results due next week.
And no, it’s not about the US Presidential election.
The New York Times, yesterday reported that a source from within the silent and hallowed halls of the horse racing drug testing in the US, claim that one of America’s best racehorses just returned a positive.
And they have named her as GAMINE (Into Mischief-Peggy Jane). She is trained by Bob Baffert and his growing number of hushed-up strange drug test results is now alarming.
Baffert’s attorney moved swiftly today to direct the heat away from Baffert.
Quoting from the New York Times: In a statement late Thursday, Baffert’s attorney called the report “inaccurate.”
“Betamethasone is a legal, commonly used anti-inflammatory medication. It is not a ‘banned substance,'” Craig Robertson wrote. “The medication was administered to Gamine on 17 August by her veterinarian and on the veterinarian’s recommendation.”
That was 18 days before the race in question. Robertson pointed out that the withdrawal period published by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission is 14 days.
You may recall the great JUSTIFY (Scat Daddy-Stage Magic) had his unbeaten record run and Triple Crown image tarnished by a reported positive, the subject of which is still ongoing, with some within those same hallowed halls stating that it wasn’t.
And of course over the past troubled year, similar findings of irregularities are emerging re Baffert trained horses, via the media.
So we now eagerly await the all important results of the 2nd testing of Gamine’s sample, which was taken from her after she ran 3rd in the Gr 1 Kentucky Oaks a few weeks back.
A positive drug test for Gamine would be the third for a Baffert runner in the past six months. On 2 May at Oaklawn Park, both CHARLATAN (Speightstown-Authenticity) after winning the Gr 1 Arkansas Derby and Gamine after winning an allowance race on the undercard that day, tested positive for too much lidocaine.
On that day and subsequent reasoning, Baffert said it came from a back-relief patch that his assistant Jimmy Barnes handled before he fitted the horses with their tongue ties.
And still, the legendary trainer is allowed to train horses.
Would he be if he were in Australia?