Forte’s Preakness Status in Doubt After KHRC Statement

A statement from the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission released Monday afternoon would seem to indicate that Forte (Violence) will not be eligible to run the Preakness Stakes, despite his owners’ stated intention earlier in the day to do so.

The release, which was distributed Monday just before 4 p.m, reads:

“The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has the following update on Forte:

Forte was scratched from the Kentucky Derby by KHRC veterinarians following Saturday’s routine soundness checks. As is the case with all KHRC veterinary scratches related to soundness, and pursuant to HISA Rule 2241(a), this places Forte on a mandatory 14-day veterinary list. After 14 days, the requirements for removal from the list include a satisfactory workout performed for a state regulatory veterinarian and a negative blood sample result.”

Earlier in the day, trainer Todd Pletcher had indicated that Forte would work later this week and, all being well, would head to the Preakness. After watching the colt gallop at Churchill Downs Monday morning, Pletcher said:

“He looked very good. He galloped a mile and three-eighths very comfortably. Seemed happy like he normally is. He’ll work probably Friday or Saturday.”

Asked if there was any sign left of the bruise that caused his scratch, Pletcher said, “No, I think that’s completely subsided now. Right now, I’d say we’re looking good to breeze for the Preakness. If we’re happy with that, that’s what we’re thinking.”

HISA Rule 2241(a) reads:

Duration of Stay on the Veterinarians’ List: Horses placed on the Veterinarians’ List in accordance with Rule 2240 shall remain on the Veterinarians’ List as follows: (a) Horses placed on the
Veterinarians’ List for unsoundness or Epistaxis shall remain on the list for 14 days.

Rule 2240 governs horses that are placed on the vets’ list, and reads:

2240. Veterinarians’ List (a) A Veterinarians’ List shall be maintained by the Authority of all Horses that are determined to be ineligible to compete in a Covered Horserace in any jurisdiction until
released by a Regulatory Veterinarian. (b) The following Horses shall be placed on the Veterinarians’ List until removed in accordance with Rules 2241 and 2242:(1) Horses affected by illness, physical distress, medical compromise, unsoundness, injury, infirmity, heat exhaustion, positive test or overage, administration of a medication invoking a mandatory stand down time, administration of Shock Wave Therapy, positive Out-of-Competition test or any other assessment or determination by Regulatory Veterinarians that such Horse is unfit to race.

The TDN contacted the KHRC for clarification. This story will be updated.

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