2021 Kentucky Derby Winner Dies Suddenly!

Medina Spirit

Medina Spirit, victor of the 2021 Kentucky Derby in a controversial win, collapsed and died earlier today after completing five furlongs in a workout at the racetrack in Santa Anita, CA. The morning workout was his second since finishing second in the Breeders’ Cup Classic at Del Mar last month.

As required by the California Horse Racing Board, the colt’s carcass will undergo a full necropsy.

The horse and trainer Bob Baffert have been under intense scrutiny since the May 1 Kentucky Derby win (the seventh for Baffert) after Medina Spirit tested positive for the steroid betamethasone, which Baffert alleges was due to the application of an ointment for treatment of a skin rash and not by means of any injection. The case is still under investigation by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission and could potentially lead to Medina Spirit and Baffert being disqualified stripped of the prized Kentucky Derby title.

Following the second place finish at last month’s BC Classic, Baffert said of Medina Spirit, “I’m very proud of him. He ran a great race. To me, he’s the best 3-year-old. He showed it today. That’s what racing is all about, proving it on the racetrack. And he proved it today that he’s the real deal.”

Since the start of the investigation, Baffert has been allowed to continue entering horses in the season-ending world championships, but only under the condition of extra scrutiny in the form of additional testing and security, for which Baffert has paid for out of his own pocket.

Owned by Amr Zedan, who competes as Zedan Racing Stables, Medina Spirit had tallied five career wins in 10 starts, with earnings of $3,545,200, according to Equibase.

Source: Associated Press (AP)