Trainer Ron Ellis has been fined $10,000 and suspended for 60 days by stewards at Los Alamitos Race Course for a medication violation in the 2016 GI Breeders’ Cup Sprint at Santa Anita with Masochistic (Sought After), according to a ruling circulated to the Los Alamitos racing office mid-afternoon Sunday. The ruling was determined by the California Horse Racing Board during their Dec. 14 meeting and carried out by stewards at Los Alamitos, which is the Southern California track with an active race meeting. As initially reported by Blood-Horse and Daily Racing Form and confirmed by the Los Alamitos racing office, Ellis will be suspended effective New Year’s Day through March 1, 2018.
Los Pollos Hermanos Racing and Jay Em Ess Stable’s Masochistic crossed the wire second behind Drefong (Gio Ponti) at the 2016 World Championships, but was subsequently disqualified after testing positive for the prohibited anabolic steroid stanozolol. Ellis acknowledged that he had administered the steroid to Masochistic 68 days prior to his anticipated start in the Breeders’ Cup, well outside the recommended withdrawal period of 60 days. The Grade I-winning gelding was subjected to out-of-competition testing three times, and Ellis said he was informed three days prior to the Sprint by the equine medical director for the California Horse Racing Board that there was a risk that trace amounts of the steroid could result in a post-race positive.
Ellis and any horses associated with his operation were previously deemed ineligible to participate in the 2017 Breeders’ Cup at Del Mar as a result of the positive.
Masochistic has since been transferred to the care of trainer Bob Baffert and worked Dec. 14 at Santa Anita. He is unraced since a 13th-place finish in the GII Churchill Downs S. on the GI Kentucky Derby undercard May 6.