By Bill Finley
According to a posting on the Horseracing Integrity and Welfare Unit (HIWU) website, Parx-based trainer Joe Taylor has been provisionally suspended after two horses he trained allegedly tested positive for banned substances.
On June 18, the Taylor-trained Cajun Cousin (Cajun Breeze) allegedly tested positive for Methylphenidate and Clenbuterol, both of which are banned substances. Two days later, Taylor sent out Classy American (Uncle Lino), who tested positive for the same two substances. Classy American finished second in a starter allowance while Cajun Cousin finished second in a $10,000 claimer.
Cajun Cousin would go on to win a $10,000 claiming race at Parx on July 12, before the results of the positive test had come back. She was claimed on July 12 by trainer Michael V. Pino for Smart Angle LLP. Under the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA)'s Anti-Doping and Medication Control (ADMC) program, a claim shall be voided if “the horse has a positive test for a prohibited substance.”
Methylphenidate is sold under the name of Ritalin, a common drug given to people battling attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It has not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for use in horses. Clenbuterol is used for respiratory ailments but is also known for having steroid-like properties that can build muscle mass.
Taylor faces a suspension of up to two years.
Taylor led all trainers at Parx in 2019 when he had 103 winners. Training since 2010, he has 328 career wins from 2,011 starters.