Justify

CHRB Votes to Let Justify's Santa Anita Derby Win Stand

The California Horse Racing Board issued a statement Friday announcing that the stewards' decision to leave Justify (Scat Daddy) the winner of the 2018 GI Santa Anita Derby will stand. The colt tested positive for Scopolamine after finishing first in the race, and went on to sweep the American Triple Crown following his Santa Anita Derby score. A CHRB release issued Friday stated: "After a hearing on Oct. 29, 2020, the Board of Stewards at Santa Anita Park racetrack issued a Statement of Decision Dec. 9 to dismiss complaints filed...

[ Read More ]
Jan. 23 Insights

Sponsored by Alex Nichols Agency INTRIGUING GROUP OF COLTS DEBUT ON PEGASUS UNDERCARD 6th-GP, $50K, Msw, 3yo, 7f, 2:04 p.m. This salty Pegasus World Cup day maiden special is littered with firsters with big pedigrees and big price tags, including a half-brother to undefeated Triple Crown hero Justify (Scat Daddy) named STAGE RAIDER (Pioneerof the Nile). After RNAing for $950,000 at KEESEP, the bay will carry the colors of breeder John Gunther and will be saddled by Chad Brown. In addition to Horse of the Year and champion 3-year-old male...

[ Read More ]
Half-Brother to Justify Primed for Gulfstream Debut

He has bred a Triple Crown winner, but John Gunther has yet to have his first superstar as an owner. He's hoping that may soon change. Gunther is the owner and breeder of Stage Raider (Pioneerof the Nile), a half-brother to Triple Crown winner Justify (Scat Daddy), who will make his debut in Saturday's sixth race at Gulfstream. And while no one is predicting that Stage Raider will win the Triple Crown, both Gunther and trainer Chad Brown are optimistic that the 3-year-old colt has above average talent. "He seems...

[ Read More ]
Kentucky Sires for 2021, First Yearlings: Part I

As we all know, the more a stallion has to prove, the more the market indulges him. As each intake shows more of its hand, however, breeders become progressively more nervous of young sires disproving judgements that are themselves typically more concerned with the anticipation of demand at the sales, than of any potency they may (or may not) be able to recycle on the track. In this third instalment of our survey, then, we begin our descent of the slippery slope with the first group to offer a hint...

[ Read More ]
With Newly Filed Appeal, Justify DQ Case Sparks Back to Life

The long and complicated case over whether to disqualify 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify for his GI Santa Anita Derby scopolamine positive sparked back to life Dec. 17, eight days after the Santa Anita Park board of stewards dismissed complaints against two Bob Baffert-trained horses that had been filed by the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) as part of a legal settlement. At the outset of Thursday's regularly scheduled CHRB meeting, the board's executive director, Scott Chaney, explained how because of a newly filed appeal, the 2 1/2-year regulatory odyssey...

[ Read More ]
Santa Anita Stewards Dismiss Complaints Against Justify, Hoppertunity

The latest development in a long, tumultuous and litigious journey saw the California Board of Stewards dismissing complaints filed by the current California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) regarding the scopolamine positives incurred by Justify (Scat Daddy) and Hoppertunity (Any Given Saturday) following their runs in the 2018 GI Santa Anita Derby and the GIII Tokyo City Cup S. respectively. The CHRB filed the complaint as part of a legal settlement with trainer Mick Ruis, owner of Santa Anita Derby runner-up Bolt d'Oro (Medaglia d'Oro). According to attorney Darrell Vienna, who...

[ Read More ]
Stable Marketplace as Book 2 Concludes at Keeneland

by Jessica Martini, Christie DeBernardis and Brian DiDonato LEXINGTON, KY- Bidding remained steady as Book 2 of the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale concluded Wednesday in Lexington. Andrew Cary made the session's most expensive purchase, going to $500,000 to acquire the mare Contributing (Medaglia d'Oro) from the Hill 'n' Dale Sales Agency consignment on behalf of Coteau Grove Farms. Weanlings held the next six top prices of the session and, for the third straight day of the sale, Justify was responsible for the top-priced foal when Chris Baccari went to...

[ Read More ]
Solid Book 2 Opener at Keeneland

by Jessica Martini, Brian DiDonato & Christie DeBernardis LEXINGTON, KY - The Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale's two-session Book 2 opened Tuesday in Lexington with solid trade and a varied bench of domestic and international buyers. Bloodstock agent Arthur Hoyeau made the day's highest bid, going to $975,000 to acquire the group-winning mare Pollara (Ire) (Camelot {GB}) from the Claiborne Farm consignment. The 5-year-old mare was one of five to sell for $500,000 or more during Tuesday's session. Six reached that level at last year's first Book 2 session. In...

[ Read More ]
Letter to the Editor: Darrell Vienna

I read with interest the article "Baffert's Lawyer: Drape's `False' Story `Debunked'" published today on your website. Although I represent Mick Ruis, the following comments set forth facts that cannot be disputed and address a number of the patently false or clearly misleading representations contained in that article. JUSTIFY'S OFFICIAL SAMPLE AND SPLIT SAMPLE CONFIRMED THE PRESENCE OF SCOPOLAMINE. The prohibited substance, scopolamine, was detected in the official test sample collected from Justify following the running of the 2018 Santa Anita Derby. Split sample testing, requested by Justify's trainer, Bob...

[ Read More ]
Baffert's Lawyer: Drape's `False' Story `Debunked'

Bob Baffert's attorney issued a statement Tuesday saying that New York Times reporter Joe Drape's reporting in 2019 on Justify's scopolamine positive was a "false story and narrative" which "were definitively debunked" in last week's California Horse Racing Board hearing on the matter. The statement from attorney W. Craig Robertson III reads, in full: "On September 11, 2019, Joe Drape of the New York Times published an article concerning trainer Bob Baffert and Triple Crown-winning horse Justify. The article strongly and inaccurately suggested that Mr. Baffert had intentionally doped Justify...

[ Read More ]
Baffert Scopolamine Hearing Unfolds in Complicated, Twisting Fashion

After 2 1/2 years of closed-session decision-making by the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) and a complicated court battle to publicly reopen the case over whether to disqualify 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify over a scopolamine positive from when the colt won that year's GI Santa Anita Derby, the initial back-and-forth legal salvos in an Oct. 29 stewards' hearing on the matter indicate that the argument could come down to whether scopolamine was a Class 3 or Class 4 substance at the time of the post-race test. The difference in...

[ Read More ]
Bellafina and Donna Veloce Retired

MGISW Bellafina (Quality Road--Akron Moon, by Malibu Moon) was pre-entered for the GI Breeders' Cup F/M Sprint Monday, but was scratched Tuesday and is now retired after developing a minor issue in her Oct. 24 breeze at Keeneland (five furlongs in 1:00.60), according to owner Kaleem Shah. Shah noted that 'TDN Rising Star' Donna Veloce (Uncle Mo--Coin Broker {Ire}, by Montjeu {Ire}) has been retired as well. Both mares will join Shah's broodmare band with Bellafina set to visit Uncle Mo and Donna Veloce booked to Justify. The news was...

[ Read More ]