Drew Mollica

Pletcher-Forte Team Granted Temporary Restraining Order On Hopeful DQ

The Schenectady Supreme Court issued a temporary restraining order Thursday that put a halt on the New York Gaming Commission's efforts to disqualify Forte (Violence) from his win in the 2022 GI Hopeful S. at Saratoga and suspend trainer Todd Pletcher. Acting on behalf of Pletcher and owners Mike Repole and Vinnie Viola, attorney Drew Mollica filed an Article 78 appeal. Article 78 appeals are lawsuits mainly used to challenge an action, or inaction, by agencies of New York State and local governments. The New York Gaming Commission has alleged...

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Reeves Responds to Gaming Commission's Appeals Dismissal

Dean Reeves, the owner of recently disqualified Brick Ambush (Laoban), issued a statement Tuesday, following the Gaming Commission's decision to not allow appeals relating to last Saturday's Great White Way S. at Aqueduct. The statement read: "After receipt of the letter from the NY Gaming commission and further discussion with our attorney Drew Mollica, our trainer Danny Gargan, Patti and I have decided to not to pursue any further action regarding the disqualification of Brick Ambush in the 9th race at Aqueduct on Dec. 16th, 2023. We maintain our belief...

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HIWU Withdraws Farrior Suspension

Just one week after the Horseracing Welfare and Integrity Unit (HIWU) issued a public disclosure on its website that top Mid-Atlantic trainer Anthony Farrior had a horse test positive for the banned substance Metformin, Farrior's attorney Drew Mollica said that he has been informed by HIWU that the charges have been dropped. "The system worked and we are happy to clear his good name and his reputation," Mollica said. Mollica said HIWU's decision came about after a review of the split sample, which was requested by Mollica and Farrior. Mollica...

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Theater Review: Gabe Mollica's `Solo, A Show About Friendship'

I first met Drew Mollica in 1988 when I was assigned by the Thoroughbred Record to write a cover story on Chris Antley, for whom Mollica was serving as a jockey agent at the time. I found Mollica hysterically funny and, full disclosure, we have been friends ever since. Having since earned his law degree, Drew now practices what might be called racetrack law, and counts the TDN among his clients. Tuesday night, I attended the opening night of his son, Gabe's, one-man show, Solo, in New York City's East...

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Vets' Attorney in Bisphosphonate Suspension Says Drs. Followed the Rules

The attorney for veterinarians Scott Shell and Barbara Hippie, who have been provisionally suspended by the Horse Racing Integrity and Welfare Unit (HIWU) for possession of bisphosphonates and two other medications told the TDN Saturday morning that the veterinarians were operating under the rule as published. "Drs. Shell and Hippie vehemently deny any violation of the veterinary rules as posted pursuant to HISA," said Drew Mollica by phone Saturday. "We look forward an immediate hearing so that all of the facts may be explored and their good names and reputations...

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Nunn's Attorney Charges HISA With Hypocrisy In Dealing With Intra-Articular Injections

Attorney Drew Mollica understands that his client trainer Doug Nunn violated Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority (HISA) Rule 3313, which prohibits trainers from running a horse within 14 days of an intra-articular joint injection or working them within seven days of the injection. What he doesn't understand is why his client has been suspended while at least 15 other trainers have been let off the hook for the same violation. "This is the height of hypocrisy," Mollica said. "He has been victimized by a system that is flawed." On June...

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Ward Hit With 15-Day Suspension For Monmouth Positives

Trainer Wesley Ward has begun serving a 15-day suspension after a horse he trained tested positive for the substances naproxen and metformin following a July 15, 2022, race at Monmouth. Ward's suspension began June 23 and ends July 7. He was also fined $2,000. The Paulick Report was first with the story. The infraction occurred in a five-furlong maiden special weight race on the turf with the gelding Insanity It Seems (Tale of the Cat), who won by 2 1/4 lengths. The horse, who is also owned by Ward, has...

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Pennsylvania Commission Rescinds Ness Penalties From '22

The Pennsylvania State Horse Racing Commission (PSHRC) has rescinded an Aug. 18, 2022, ruling against trainer Jamie Ness that suspended him six months and fined him $5,000 for a positive drug test for bufotenine in a winning horse at Parx. Bufotenine is a psychoactive substance often referred to as "toad venom" because one of its sources is the skin of toads from the genus Bufo. In humans, it has been used for centuries in traditional forms of medicine as both a hallucinogen and a purported aphrodisiac. Starting in the 1990s,...

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New Ruling on Changes Leaves NYRA, Trainers Puzzled

The notice began appearing on the overnight in early January. "By order of the stewards. Pursuant to NYSGC RULE 4033.8. Effective February 1st, only equipment specifically approved by the stewards shall be worn or carried by a jockey or a horse in a race. No equipment change (including shoes) will be allowed once the overnight is published." "There is no new rule," wrote Brad Maoine, Director of Communications for the New York State Gaming Commission in response to TDN's request for information about the new posting on the overnight. "The...

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Denied Commission Stay, Trainer Noda Fights NYSGC Penalty in Court

In an effort to fight a 90-day suspension and $5,000 fine for "striking a horse excessively" during a 2021 workout at Saratoga Race Course, trainer Orlando Noda has commenced proceedings in Schenectady Supreme Court that he hopes will prove the New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC) acted unlawfully last month when it rejected an appeal hearing officer's recommendation that his case be dismissed without penalization. Noda's legal filing is known as an Article 78 review, which pertains to a New York state law by which a petitioner can ask a...

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Trainer, Clocker Stunned as NYSGC Rejects Advice of from Hearing Appeal Officers

by T.D. Thornton & Bill Finley The New York State Gaming Commission (NYSGC) on Monday adjudicated two unrelated penalty appeals by a clocker and a trainer by flat-out rejecting two separate hearing officers' recommendations that those cases be dismissed without penalization. In both instances, the commissioners voted unanimously to impose the original penalties that had been handed down by Braulio Baeza, Jr., the NYSGC state steward at the three New York Racing Association (NYRA) tracks. Monday's vote means trainer Orlando Noda now must pay a fine of $5,000, serve a...

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Ness Receives Six-Month Suspension in PA; Has Appealed

Jamie Ness, a prolific winner in the Mid-Atlantic states and the third-leading trainer in the country in wins, has been handed a six-month suspension by the Pennsylvania Racing Commission after a horse he trained tested positive for Bufotenine. Ness was also fined $5,000. The suspension is scheduled to begin Sept. 5 and runs through March 3, 2023. Ness, who is being represented by attorney Andrew Mollica, has appealed the suspension. "We are in the process of appealing," Mollica said. "We will take this the whole way. He obviously vehemently denies...

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