Medina Spirit fails drug test after winning Kentucky Derby, putting title in jeopardy

Medina Spirit’s win at the 2021 Kentucky Derby is under dispute after the horse failed a drug test, according to the New York Times. If the failed test is confirmed, the colt would be retroactively disqualified from the race and would have to forfeit its title and winning purse.

Medina Spirit entered the Kentucky Derby with 12-1 odds, which was sixth best at the time of the race. The horse earned $1.86 million in purse money as the first-place finisher.

The horse reportedly tested positive for betamethasone, which is injected into the joints of a horse to reduce pain and swelling.

Medina Spirit was trained by legendary trainer Bob Baffert, who claimed his seventh Kentucky Derby title with the horse’s win. Baffert is no stranger to recent controversy. His horse Gamine was retroactively disqualified from last year’s Kentucky Oaks after it failed a drug test for the same substance. Baffert’s horses have reportedly failed five drug tests in the last year.

Baffert also trained Justify, the most recent Triple Crown winner, who also failed a drug test.

If a split sample confirms a positive test for betamethasone, Baffert will still be able to appeal.

We’ll update this story as it develops.

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