Jockey Kent Desormeaux, absent from racing since a January domestic abuse arrest in Louisiana, received a 60-day suspension from California Horse Racing Board stewards on Sunday but will have an opportunity to return to the saddle this fall.
The suspension, to run from Aug. 8 through Oct. 6., is for a second disorderly conduct violation that took place at an RV park on the grounds of Del Mar racetrack last Nov. 23. The 52-year-old Desormeaux was also found to be in violation of Rule 1485 (License Subject to Conditions and Agreement) for failing to abide by a written agreement with the Winners Foundation, an organization that assists individuals in racing with addiction or substance abuse issues.
Desormeaux’s license had been suspended since March after he failed to appear at a hearing with CHRB stewards on the disorderly conduct charge. That ruling has now been set aside following his meeting with stewards on July 29.
The ruling also states the Hall of Fame rider and three-time Eclipse Award winner “shall sign a testing agreement with the California Horse Racing Board while licensed in California and is ordered to be evaluated by the Winners Foundation and shall abide by the recommendations of that organization. Failure to do so may result in a suspension of his license.”
During the term of his suspension, Desormeaux is denied access to all premises of licensed California racetracks. The suspension will be honored by all other North American racing jurisdictions.
Desormeaux has admitted to alcohol problems in the past and the two incidents that led to the disorderly conduct complaints reportedly involved alcohol. The first incident, which occurred in 2020, led to a 15-day suspension and his ejection from Del Mar property. The owners of Santa Anita excluded Desormeaux from its premises following his January arrest.
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