Haskell could see the return of Baffert


Trainer Bob Baffert plans to return to training on Sunday, July 3, following the conclusion of a 90-day suspension issued by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. According to the Asbury Park Press, the nine-time winner of the Grade 1 Haskell could send one or more top 3-year-old entrants to the Jersey Shore for the 2022 edition on July 23.

Dennis Drazin, chairman and CEO of Darby Development, which operates Monmouth Park, told the APP: “Bob Baffert has been a central piece of making the Haskell what it is today and has always supported Monmouth Park, and once his suspension ends he is welcome to come to Monmouth Park and participate in any of our races that he wishes to.”

The Haskell is a “Win and You’re In” race for the Breeders’ Cup Classic; the winner is granted an expenses-paid berth in the Classic starting gate at Keeneland this November.

Read more at the Asbury Park Press.

But that is not the end to Baffert’s story, as it rarely is.

ESPN reported the following on 23rd June 2022 via the Associated Press:

The New York Racing Association suspended trainer Bob Baffert for one year Thursday for repeated medication violations,

A panel credited Baffert for time served from an initial suspension that makes the two-time Triple Crown-winner eligible to saddle horses in New York again Jan. 26. The final decision marks the end of a protracted back and forth about Baffert’s status in the state that began in May 2021.

“This was an impartial and deliberative process that has resulted in a lengthy suspension of the sport’s most prominent trainer,” NYRA President and CEO Dave O’Rourke said in statement. “However, this is not simply about Bob Baffert or any one individual but about protecting the integrity of the sport here in New York. Today’s decision advances that goal.”

Medina Spirit is guided to the track before participating in the 146th Preakness Stakes in May. Medina Spirit collapsed and died Monday after a workout at Santa Anita Park. (Julio Cortez / Associated Press / LA Times). Image not filed with this report.

The ban is shorter than the two years Churchill Downs sidelined Baffert after Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit tested positive for a substance that is not allowed on race day. Retired New York State Supreme Court Justice O. Peter Sherwood, who was serving as the NYRA hearing officer, previously recommended a two-year suspension.

Baffert’s camp asked for a stay of the NYRA suspension that was immediately denied. A message seeking comment from Baffert or his attorney was not immediately returned.

Featured Image: Bob Baffert by Michael Clevenger, Louisville Courier-Journal, June 2018.

Tuesday’s Horse

Official Blog of The Fund for Horses

2 thoughts on “Haskell could see the return of Baffert”

  1. This SOB needs to leave racing. He is the face of the drug culture in racing, and yet the industry has crowned him as the preeminent face of NA racing. Well, at least we can say they aren’t wrong, but for the wrong reasons.

    Liked by 3 people

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