Bob Baffert has found himself in yet another controversy as one of his horses died in the Preakness Stakes undercard on Saturday.
Baffert was suspended from Churchill Downs for two years after a positive drug test on Medina Spirit, who crossed the finish line first at the 2021 Kentucky Derby – the horse was eliminated, but to make matters worse, it died that December.
The trainer’s Havnameltown suffered a “non-operable” injury in the sixth race at Pimlico Race Course on Saturday, and doctors opted to euthanize the horse.
PETA, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, blasted Baffert when the tragedy struck.
“Pimlico should have followed Churchill Downs’ example and barred Bob Baffert from the track. Baffert has been implicated in drugging scandals, the deaths of seven horses who collapsed in California, and at least 75 horses in his care have died,” the organization said in a statement to Fox News Digital. “The tragic death of Havnameltdown is the latest in a long line of fatalities. The racing industry must kick out the bad guys or it will have blood on its hands as well as blood on its tracks.”
“The loss of Havnameltdown will be felt across the entire horse racing community, and everyone at Maryland Jockey Club and 1/ST Racing extends out heartfelt condolences to Havnameltdown’s connections,” 1/ST Racing, the owners of Pimlico Race Course.
The horse’s jockey, Luis Saez, was hospitalized following his fall off the horse – he is stable and conscious, the owners of Pimlico said.
Havnameltdown’s death comes after seven horses died of multiple reasons in the days – and even hours – leading up to the Kentucky Derby.
One of the horses, Wild on Ice, was set to run in the May 6 Derby, while two other horses died at Churchill Downs hours before the race went off.