Todd Pletcher-trained Grade 2 winner Emmanuel was scratched from Saturday’s Belmont Derby Invitational (G1) because it was determined he had received three doses of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) within seven days of the race, which violates New York rules, according to Dr. Scott Palmer, equine medical director of the New York State Gaming Commission, Daily Racing Form reports.
The colt’s scratch resulted in the Gaming Commission fining Pletcher $1,000 for “failing to follow procedures listed in the horsemen’s conditions signed prior to the running of the race,” according to a ruling issued Sunday.
According to the Form, Emmanuel, a 3-year-old son of More Than Ready owned by WinStar Farm and Siena Farm, received a Butazolidin injection on July 3, 4, and 7, based on medical records supplied by Pletcher and his veterinarians.
Additionally, the Gaming Commission requested medical records from Pletcher after a July 4 out-of-competition test revealed the corticosteroid dexamethasone in Emmanuel’s system. It was determined that on July 4, the colt received Naquasone, which contains dexamethasone, Palmer said.
Pletcher told the Form that wording of a rule change covering drug protocols announced in December 2020 was unclear.
“I didn’t think the rule was written clearly and I don’t think people on our team had a clear understanding of the intention of the rule and that includes our veterinary team,” Pletcher said. “I take full responsibility; it’s my job to know the rules.”
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