Trainer Rudy Rodriguez Suspended and Fined by New York State Gaming Commission
The New York State Gaming Commission has suspended and fined troubled trainer Rudy Rodriguez after two of his horses tested positive for drugs. Rodriguez will serve a 25-day suspension from March 2-25 and pay a $2,500 fine.
The NYS Gaming Commission issued the ruling February 28 after two of Rodriguez’ horses tested positive for the Class 4 therapeutic drug flunixin, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug also known as Banamine that is used to treat colic and muscle pain. Majestic Marquet and Vee’s Accolade both had flunixin present in their system during race day.
Majestic Marquet won the eighth race at Aqueduct Racetrack on March 10, 2013, while Vee’s Accolade finished second in the sixth race at Belmont Park April 26. Both horses were disqualified from the order of finish and ordered unplaced, with purse money from the races to be redistributed.
Rodriguez will be denied access to the grounds and after completion of his suspension, he’ll serve a nine-month probationary period. An additional 20-day suspension would be levied if any horse in his barn tests positive to drug use.
This is not the first time Rodriguez has been in trouble with drugging horses. The former jockey and exercise rider for banned trainer Rick Dutrow Jr. also served a 20-day suspension in 2013 and paid a 7,500 fine after two horses tested positive for flunixin in 2012.
Rodriguez began his training career in 2010 and has saddled 582 winners with earnings of $24,819,559. In 2014 he had his best season ever, winning 132 races from 628 starts with earnings of $7,510,689, including saddling the winners of four grade I races – Belle Gallantey (Delaware Handicap, Beldame Stakes), Dads Caps (Carter Handicap), and Condo Commando (Spinaway Stakes).
Condo Commando is considered a top prospect for this year’s Longines Kentucky Oaks (gr.I) to be held at Churchill Downs May 1.