Medina Spirit
Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit, a horse trained by Bob Baffert, runs on the track at Churchill Downs in Louisville. REUTERS/Bryan Woolston

The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission announced Monday that the victory of Southern California trainer Bob Baffert’s Medina Spirit at the 2021 Kentucky Derby has been disqualified.

The horse failed a drug test after crossing the finish line first at the Derby, but the validity of the test had been challenged.

Medina Spirit died at the end of a workout at Santa Anita Park racetrack on Dec. 6. The horse last competed locally in the Breeders’ Cup in Del Mar one month before.

The Kentucky commission also announced a 90-day suspension for Baffert, fined him $7,500, and said the winner’s purse of $1.86 million must be returned. Baffert said he plans to appeal the decision

“I am very disappointed in the ruling,” Baffert said in a statement reported by CNN. “It runs contrary to the scientifically proven facts in this case and the rules of the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. We will be filing an immediate appeal.”

Churchill Downs, where the race too place, said Mandaloun is now the winner of the 147th running of the Kentucky Derby.

Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.