Doping Scandal

The Week in Review: After Guilty Pleas, Will More Trainers Be Charged?

The next chapter in the scandal that has rocked Thoroughbred racing played out last week when Scott Robinson and Sarah Izhaki both pled guilty to charges relating to the sale and distribution of performance-enhancing drugs used to dope race horses. It was an important development, but the bigger story is this: will it lead to a new and extensive list of indictments against trainers and others who so far have not been charged? That possibility certainly exists. For now, everything is speculation and the Department of Justice has not said...

[ Read More ]
Two Defendants in Federal Indictment Plead Guilty to Doping Charges

Scott Robinson and Sarah Izhaki each pled guilty today to conspiring to unlawfully distribute adulterated and misbranded drugs for the purpose of doping racehorses. Robinson pled guilty before U.S. District Judge J. Paul Oetken, and will be sentenced by Judge Oetken Jan. 15, 2021. Izhaki pled guilty before U.S. District Judge Mary Kay Vyskocil, and will be sentenced by Judge Vyskocil Dec. 2, 2020. The guilty pleas are the first major domino to fall from the bombshell FBI indictments that the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New...

[ Read More ]
Bettor Awarded $20K After Charging He was Cheated by Horse Dopers

In a landmark case that could pave the way for bettors to recoup gambling earnings they may have lost when their picks were beaten by doped horses, a harness racing horseplayer has received $20,000 in a settlement after he claimed he was cheated out of winnings in a 2016 race at the Meadowlands. In 2018, Illinois resident and gambler Jeffrey Tretter went to court in an effort to recoup over $31,000 he says he was entitled to because his bets would have come in if not for his selections being...

[ Read More ]
Report: Shancelot Transferred to Asmussen

Graded stakes winner Shancelot (Shanghai Bobby), previously trained by the now-indicted Jorge Navarro, will be joining the Steve Asmussen barn in May, according to a report in Paulick Report. The 4-year-old blitzed to a 12 1/2-length victory in last year's GII Amsterdam S. in just his third career start. He was narrowly beaten when third in the GI H. Allen Jerkens S. and second in the GI Santa Anita Sprint Championship S. and hasn't started since finishing second behind champion Mitole (Eskendereya) in the GI Breeders' Cup Sprint last November....

[ Read More ]
Owner Donoghue: 'Disgust' With Cheating Pushing Me to Race Overseas

Last week on the TDN Writers' Room podcast presented by Keeneland, spurred by this Bill Finley column in which prominent owner Joe Sutton spoke out about trainer Joe Sharp and his twice-disqualified Blackberry Wine (Oxbow)--who continues to run in conditions he would be ineligible for if not for positive drug tests--I put out an open call. I wanted to hear from owners and trainers who have been adversely affected by cheating and drugging of horses in light of the bombshell allegations revealed by the FBI indictments that rocked the sport...

[ Read More ]
Drazin Issues Lengthy Statement On Indictments Supporting HIA, On-Track Pharmacy, Outlining Plans for His Servis Trainees

Choosing not to comment last week as the horse racing world responded en masse to the bombshell announcement of indictments against 27 figures in the sport, including high-profile trainers Jorge Navarro and Jason Servis, Darby Development CEO and Monmouth Park Operator Dennis Drazin has weighed in with a lengthy statement that was released Monday, shortly after Monmouth announced it will close and push back the start of its racing meet due to coronavirus concerns. The statement reads in part, "First and foremost, Monmouth Park and Darby Development, as well as...

[ Read More ]
Florida Horseman Lichoa Charged As Part of Money-Laundering Scheme

Florida-based trainer Alfredo Lichoa is among five people who have been arrested afer a money-laundering investigation that was conducted by the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, the same agency that has indicted 27 people as part of a horse-doping ring. Lichoa and the others were arrested Mar. 9, the same day the FBI rounded up Jason Servis, Jorge Navarro and 25 others indicted for their alleged role in treating racehorses with performance-enhancing drugs. The money-laundering story was first reported by Paulick Report. Lichoa, a native of...

[ Read More ]
Harness Trainer Rene Allard Latest Arrested in Doping Scandal

Harness trainer Rene Allard has joined the long list of those indicted for their role in a massive horse doping scheme that has rocked Thoroughbred and harness racing. The number of individuals who are known to have been involved is now 29. Allard was not among the original list of names of those who were indicted that was released Monday by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York. Allard is second in the current trainer's standings at Yonkers Raceway, behind only Richard Banca, who has also...

[ Read More ]
On TDN Writers' Room Podcast, The Crew Discusses Doping Bombshell

The TDN Writer's Room podcast, presented each week by Keeneland, pulled no punches as the writers covered all aspects of the indictments for horse doping of 27 people announced Monday by the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York. The dialogue included a combination of passion, anger and bewilderment on a story that has rocked the industry. "The big shock is not the scandal itself. The big shock is not that these guys were drugging horses and cheating," said Joe Bianca who kicked off the News of...

[ Read More ]
'Bisou' Moves to Top of NTRA TB Poll Following Doping Controversy

Champion Midnight Bisou (Midnight Lute) took the lead in this week's NTRA Top Thoroughbred Poll with 376 votes. The position was previously held by fellow champion Maximum Security (New Year's Day), who bested his female counterpart in the $20 million Saudi Cup Feb. 29. In the wake of the doping controversy, which involved Maximum Security's trainer Jason Servis, NTRA voers were given the opportunity to adjust their selections if they wanted. Maximum Security still received 241 votes, but dropped to fourth behind GI Pegasus World Cup victor Mucho Gusto (Mucho...

[ Read More ]