2021 Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit fails drug test

By Anthony Caruso III | Publisher

There is controversy surrounding 2021 Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit. The Bob Baffert trained horse failed a drug test after the marquee event.

The announcement was made on Sunday. Churchill Downs has suspended Baffert from training horses at the facility until the investigation is over.

Medina Spirit wins the prestigious 2021 Kentucky Derby
Medina Spirit wins the prestigious 2021 Kentucky Derby (Photo by Kentucky Derby/Twitter)

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission (KHRC) found betamethasone in the horse’s system. Baffert said on Sunday that he was informed by the assistant trainer found 21 picograms of the drug in the horse.

“Medina Spirit has never been treated with betamethasone,” Baffert said. “Yesterday, I got the biggest gut-punch in racing for something I didn’t do.”

A second sample has been taken. Depending on the second test, Baffert could lose his win. Medina Spirit would be disqualified.

“Churchill Downs will not tolerate it,” the statement said. “Given the seriousness of the alleged offense, Churchill Downs will immediately suspend Bob Baffert, the trainer of Medina Spirit, from entering any horses at Churchill Downs Racetrack.

“To be clear, if the findings are upheld, Medina Spirit’s results in the Kentucky Derby will be invalidated and Mandaloun will be declared the winner.”

Medina Spirit was a surprise winner of the May 1st event. If the win is wiped out, it’ll be the first disqualification from a winner since 1968 with Dancer’s Image.

“I know everybody’s not out to get me,” Baffert said. “But there is something wrong. Why is it happening to me? There’s problems in racing. But it’s not Bob Baffert.”

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