Dutrow faces ban for horse's positive test
By WILL GRAVES
AP Sports Writer
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Rick Dutrow, trainer of Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Big Brown, is facing a 15-day suspension by Kentucky racing officials after another horse he trains exceeded
the allowable limit for a drug that increases lung capacity.
Two separate drug tests on 8-year-old gelding Salute the Count revealed the horse had twice the allowable limit of Clenbuterol in his system after finishing second in the Aegon Turf Sprint at Churchill Downs on May 2, said John Veitch, chief steward of the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority.
Clenbuterol is often used by humans who suffer from asthma.Veitch said use of the drug in horses has grown because it can increase lung capacity. It is considered a Class B drug. Though use of the drug is legal under Kentucky racing guidelines, it cannot be administered 72 hours before a race.
"It's a respiratory enhancer," Veitch said. "It's become quite popular in racing medication because it's used to train on."
Dutrow waived his right to a hearing but plans to file a written appeal, which he must do within the next 10 days. There's no timetable on when Dutrow's appeal will be heard, Veitch said.
Dutrow said he sometimes uses the drug in other horses and was previously reprimanded by the New York Racing and Wagering Board for a similar infraction several years ago.
"I really haven't had any problems with it," Dutrow said in a phone interview.
The first drug test was conducted by the Iowa State University lab. Dutrow requested a second test, which was conducted by a lab at Louisiana State University. That test also came back positive.
Dutrow raced four horses during Churchill Downs' spring meet, the last on May 17. He does not currently have any horses at the track, said Churchill Downs spokesman Darren Rogers.
As part of the penalty, Salute the Count owners Michael Dubb and Robert Joscelyn must return $20,000 in purse money. On June 15, the horse finished second to First Defence in the Jaipur Stakes at
The penalty is the first for Dutrow in Kentucky, though hardly the first time he's run into trouble. He spoke openly about his checkered past during Big Brown's run at the Triple Crown. He's been cited dozens of times over the years for everything from repeated medication violations to his own drug use.
The news of the test comes just days after IEAH Stables, co-owners of Big Brown, stepped forward and said it would take all of the 50-plus horses in their stable off steroids and shy away from trainers who continue to use the drugs to maintain their horses.
"If they don't want to play by the rules, then they don't get to train with us," Michael Iavarone, co-president of IEAH, told The Associated Press in an interview Monday.
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)