- Medina Spirit won the Kentucky Derby, but then tested positive for betamethasone.
- Trainer Bob Baffert originally denied giving the horse the drug.
- Baffert put the blame on a trainer's urine before putting the blame on a prescription medication.
LAS VEGAS - Famed horse trainer Bob Baffert is embroiled in scandal after his horse, Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit, tested positive for betamethasone.
Baffert released a statement on Tuesday claiming that his horse was prescribed a type of medicine that, unbeknownst to everyone involved, contained betamethasone, a banned substance.
Bob Baffert releases new statement in which he says, “Oops, I guess I did do it” pic.twitter.com/Yn30EolMjQ
— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) May 11, 2021
Medina Spirit was Baffert’s seventh Kentucky Derby winner, a record setting number, but what will happen to that win remains unclear at the moment.
As far as horse race betting goes, the results are final - even if the win is overturned, online sportsbooks will not be refunding bets on other competitors.
Before Tuesday, Baffert was adamant that he did nothing wrong, and in fact blamed “cancel culture” for the reaction to his horse’s positive drug test.
“Churchill Downs came out with that statement – that was pretty harsh,” said Baffert. “With all the noise … We live in a different world now. This America is different. It was like a cancel culture kind of a thing so they’re reviewing it. I haven’t been told anything. We’re prepared to run.”
After the Kentucky Oaks last autumn, another of Baffert’s horses tested positive for the same drug, and Baffert was fined in connection with this positive test.
The connection to “cancel culture” seems spurious at best.
Before coming clean, Baffert offered another explanation for the positive drug test. Urine. Human urine.
Baffert says one test issue was created by a groom urinating in the stall after the groom had been taking cough medicine. Horse ate some of the hay.
— rickbozich (@rickbozich) May 10, 2021
To put it mildly, this seems to be an implausible explanation, given by a man who wore sunglasses on daytime talk shows while blaming cancel culture for why people seem to be annoyed at him potentially cheating.
The fact that this explanation was given less than a day before Baffert’s mea culpa statement casts doubt on his trustworthiness as a whole.
Medina Spirit is currently en route to the Preakness Stakes, where he will compete without Baffert.
A second drug test is still in the works for Medina Spirit, and if it comes back positive, the horse -and Baffert - will likely be stripped of the Kentucky Derby crown.