Gamine Disqualified after Positive

Champion female sprinter Gamine was disqualified from her third-place finish in the 2020 Kentucky Oaks and trainer Bob Baffert was fined $1,500 after testing positive for betamethasone, a class C drug.

Baffert waived his right to a formal ruling before the Kentucky Board of Stewards, according to a Jan. 30 ruling from the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission.

Gamine's purse money — $120,000 — also is forfeited. With the DQ, Speech moves into third place. Pari-mutuel wagering is not affected.

Word of the positive test after the Sept. 4 race emerged in October. At the time, Baffert attorney Craig Robertson called the report "inaccurate."

"Betamethasone is a legal, commonly used anti-inflammatory medication. It is not a 'banned substance,' " Robertson wrote. "The medication was administered to Gamine on Aug. 17 by her veterinarian and on the veterinarian's recommendation."

Robertson also pointed out that the withdrawal period published by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission is 14 days. "If they are told by regulators that a medication will clear a horse's system in 14 days, they must be able to rely on that information," Robertson said.

This is the third positive drug test for a Baffert runner since last spring. On May 2 at Oaklawn Park, Charlatan tested positive for an overage of lidocaine after winning the Arkansas Derby (G1) and Gamine tested positive for the same after winning an allowance race on the undercard. Baffert said it came from a back-relief patch that his assistant Jimmy Barnes handled before he fitted the horses with tongue ties.

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