With Bob Baffert’s appeal for a stay of his suspension for a betamethasone positive on Medina Spirit in the Kentucky Derby denied by a Kentucky Court of Appeals, his horses will be trained by Tim Yakteen and Sean McCarthy
Tim Yakteen, a former assistant trainer to Bob Baffert had already assumed the training of select horses including likely Santa Anita Derby favorite and Kentucky Derby prospect Messier. Adare Manor, a Kentucky Oaks possibility was also transferred to Yakteen in light of Churchill Downs separate ruling that any horses trained by Bob Baffert were ineligible to earn Kentucky Derby or Kentucky Oaks points. Tim Yakteen also assumed the training of Doppleganger who was unplaced in the Arkansas Derby on Saturday and is likely off the Kentucky Derby trail.
Bob Baffert also has a tie to trainer Sean McCarthy. Sean McCarthy’s wife Kim, is Bob Baffert’s office manager. Bob Baffert’s suspension will begin Monday April 4th and run through July 2nd. Del Mar opens on July 22nd.
Sean McCarthy will train the majority of the horses. Tim Yakteen appears to have select horses pointing or targeting certain stakes. Both trainers would be eligible to run any horses they received from the Baffert barn after April 4th. Adare Manor is scheduled to run in the Grade 2 Anita Oaks on April 9.
There has been no announcement on what will occur with Bob Baffert’s staff including assistant trainer Jimmy Barnes or if Tim Yakteen or Sean McCarthy will be taking any of them on due to the influx of horses.
1st Racing who operates Santa Anita issued the following statement:
The California Horse Racing Board announced on Saturday, April 2 that “[trainer Bob Baffert is now suspended pursuant to CHRB Rule 1484].” California has thus reciprocated the suspension against Bob Baffert imposed by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, which will begin on April 4, 2022. Because of the CHRB’s ruling, any trainer on the grounds at Santa Anita Park, Golden Gate Fields, San Luis Rey Downs or Los Alamitos Race Course who may be the transferee of horses from the Baffert barn will be required to apply for stalls for those horses from the Santa Anita or Golden Gate Fields racing offices, as applicable, for review and approval. A Change of Trainer form will also be required to be submitted in order to enter races following such transfer. Horses that are not transferred to a trainer in California will be required to leave the grounds prior to April 4.
Because the suspension is over 60 days, under CHRB rules, during the term of the suspension Mr. Baffert will be banned from all enclosures under the jurisdiction of the CHRB and Mr. Baffert shall not be permitted to be involved in the training of horses who have previously been under his care. Any trainer who may apply for stalls in anticipation of a transfer will be required to comply fully with any applicable restrictions.
The CHRB rules require Baffert to vacate his barn at Santa Anita Park prior to the start of the suspension on April 4, along with removing all signage, colors and training equipment belonging to the trainer. The closing day of Santa Anita’s winter-spring season on June 19, 2022. The 90-day suspension from the KHRC concludes the following week.
The Kentucky Court of Appeals denied the stay on procedural grounds and not on the merits of the case. The merits and facts of the case have yet to be decided by the courts. That fight continues and is a separate legal battle than the one Bob Baffert filed against Churchill Downs for the two year ban and points ban for the Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks. Both legal cases continue through the litigation process as of now.