Bob Baffert will return to racing this weekend after serving his 90-day suspension.
Baffert, who was suspended by Kentucky Horse Racing Commission stewards as a result of Medina Spirit failing a drug test after the Kentucky Derby, entered four horses for Saturday’s races at Los Alamitos Race Course. He has Western Cape, a 3-year-old colt making his debut, and Rhetoric, a horse that hasn’t raced in over a year, in a $50,000 maiden race at the Southern California track.
They are going to race in the Los Alamitos Derby. High Connection and Doppelganger finished second and third in a field of four in the Affirmed Stakes a month ago, under different trainers.
He has a 3-year-old filly running in a $50,000 maiden race on Sunday.
After Baffert’s suspension ended last Sunday, the trainer resumed operations at his base. Some owners are holding off on returning their horses to him, he told the Los Angeles Times. He lost some horses, including last year’s 2-year-old champion Corniche, who was moved to Todd Pletcher.
Baffert is still fighting the decision of the stewards, who disqualified Medina Spirit as the winner of last year’s Derby.
In addition, he still has a federal lawsuit against Churchill Downs, which issued its own ban against him through next year’s Derby at all of its tracks. His horses in this year’s 2-year-old class can’t earn points for next year’s Derby because of the ban.
The New York Racing Association suspended him for fielding horses at its three tracks. The decision was announced two weeks ago after a lengthy process that also included a federal court case.
Baffert has a plan to run his horses at Del Mar this summer.
The Haskell Stakes is likely to be the next major race for Baffert. On Thursday, the New Jersey track announced 19 horses were nominated for the July 23 race, and Baffert submitted two of his top horses for the $1 million race.
Taiba had a disappointing 12th place finish in his third career start after winning the Santa Anita Derby. He hasn’t raced since and will look for his third win.
Like Taiba, Pinehurst won his first two starts. In his last four races, he has only won once, in the Saudi Derby in February. The colt was last raced in the March 26UAE Derby, where he finished last and showed some lameness.
Tom Ryan said that the colt had a minor eye injury during the race. He was rested for 30 days before he was ready for the summer racing season.
Early Voting is a Brown colt who has three wins in four starts. He won the May 21 Preakness by a length and a quarter over Epicenter.
Bob Baffert has entered four horses for Saturday’s races at Los Alamitos Race Course. He was suspended by Kentucky Horse Racing Commission stewards as a result of Medina Spirit failing a drug test after the 2021 Kentucky Derby. The Hall of Fame trainer served his 90-day suspension last Sunday.