The hot favourite for the Preakness Stakes Medina Spirit gained conditional entry to the event despite failing a drug test for the steroid betamethasone after the 2021 Kentucky Derby victory.
The conditions include “a binding commitment” from Medina Spirit’s trainer, Bob Baffert, for “full transparency of medical and testing results that will allow for all results to be released to the public,” Maryland Jockey Club and 1/St Racing said in a statement.
The announcement said there will be “rigorous testing and monitoring” of Medina Spirit and another Baffert-trained horse, Concert Tour, which also is set to run in the Preakness.
The 146th running of the Preakness, which is the second jewel of thoroughbred racing’s Triple Crown, is set for Saturday at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore.
Baffert’s lawyer earlier had threatened to seek a court injunction if Medina Spirit was barred from Preakness Stakes, as the trainer awaits a second drug test from the Derby that would end with the horse’s victory there being voided if it is positive.
Another Baffert horse, the filly Beautiful Gift, is entered to run in the George E. Mitchell Black-Eyed Susan Stakes at Pimlico on Friday, and will be subject to the same conditions, according to Tuesday’s statement.
Baffert on Sunday disclosed that Medina Spirit tested positive for 21 picograms of betamethasone, 11 picograms above the legal limit, on the day of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville.
Baffert, who was suspended indefinitely from Churchill Downs as a result of the failed first test, said at the time that he did not know how the steroid, which is normally used to treat a horse’s joints, entered Medina Spirit’s system.