Bob Baffert, the Hall of Fame trainer facing criticism after his Kentucky Derby-winning horse tested positive for a banned substance, is invoking “cancel culture” amid an investigation.
Baffert was making the media rounds on Monday, the day after Medina Spirit’s win in the first leg of the Triple Crown had come under question. The horse tested positive for the steroid betamethasone and Baffert was suspended by Churchill Downs.
“It did not happen. That horse has never been treated with [betamethasone],” Baffert said on Fox News. “Actually, it’s a legal therapeutic medicine and the amount that was in it wouldn’t have any effect on the horse anyway. But we don’t … That horse was never treated with that and so that’s the disturbing part of it.
“I never thought I’d have to be fighting for my reputation and the poor horse’s reputation. Because of the new regulations the regulators have put, they’re testing these horses at contaminated levels and it’s been a horrible experience.”
On “The Dan Patrick Show,” Baffert claimed that a groom urinated in the horse’s stall after he had been taking cough medicine and Medina Spirit ate some of the hay. It is currently on the way to Baltimore, although Baffert has yet to be told if Medina Spirit will be allowed to run in this Saturday’s Preakness Stakes. A second drug test usually takes up to three weeks, so a decision may not happen right away.
“Churchill Downs came out with that statement – that was pretty harsh,” he said. “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.”
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