Medina Spirit Case: New Hearing Officer Orders Briefs Filed By Dec. 22 - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

Medina Spirit Case: New Hearing Officer Orders Briefs Filed By Dec. 22

Medina Spirit with trainer Bob Baffert

A new order in the Medina Spirit case requires attorneys for the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, trainer Bob Baffert, and owner Amr Zedan to submit a set of documents to the new hearing officer, Eden Savis Stephens, by Dec. 22, reports

The filings are to contain proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law based on the evidence submitted during a six-day appeal hearing before hearing officer Clay Patrick back in August. They may also contain briefs or written arguments.

Stephens, the deputy director of the Kentucky Office of Administrative Hearings, replaced Patrick after the original hearing officer recused himself from the case. Patrick made the decision after attorney Clark Brewster, who represents Medina Spirit's owner Amr Zedan, told the Paulick Report he unknowingly bought a horse at the Keeneland September Yearling Sale that was co-owned by Patrick.

Zedan appealed the disqualification of Medina Spirit – who has since died – and Baffert wants the $7,500 fine and 90-day suspension he already served erased. Medina Spirit was disqualified after a positive test for betamethasone, which Baffert and Zedan attorneys said resulted from an ointment used to treat a skin rash on the colt.

After the filings are submitted, Stephens will be able to make a recommendation to the KHRC which either affirms or denies Medina Spirit's disqualification. The recommendation would then go to the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, which can accept, reject or amend it. It remains to be seen if any commission members, a number of which have directly or indirectly conducted business with Baffert and/0r Zedan, will recuse themselves from the matter.


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