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What happens to bets placed on Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit?

USA TODAY SPORTS logo USA TODAY SPORTS 5/10/2021 Jon Hale, Louisville Courier Journal
a dog that is standing in front of a crowd: John Velazquez, aboard Medina Spirit, wins the Kentucky Derby. © Michael Clevenger/Courier Journal John Velazquez, aboard Medina Spirit, wins the Kentucky Derby.

Medina Spirit’s Kentucky Derby win is at risk after a positive test for betamethasone, but what about the bets cashed in on the victory?

Even if Medina Spirit is ultimately disqualified – something that can only happen after a second positive test – pari-mutuel wagering is unlikely to be affected.

The last time a Kentucky Derby winner was disqualified for a positive drug test (Dancer’s Image, 1968), the Kentucky Horse Racing commission ordered Forward Pass, the horse that crossed the finish line second in the race, be considered the winner of the 1968 Kentucky Derby, except for pari-mutuel payoffs.

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When Bob Baffert-trained filly Gamine was disqualified from her third-place finish in the 2020 Kentucky Oaks, pari-mutuel wagering was not affected by the ruling.


Video: Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit tests positive for anti-inflammatory drug (Louisville Courier-Journal)

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Anyone with a winning ticket for Mandaloun, the horse that finished second in the 2021 Derby, is unlikely to be able to cash it in if Medina Spirit is disqualified either.

Bob Heleringer, author of “Equine Regulatory Law,” told The Courier Journal when the owners of Maximum Security were attempting to overturn that horse’s disqualification as the 2019 Kentucky Derby winner that once a race is official, the betting results are final, regardless of mistakes by the track or an appeal.

He called it “one of the most irrevocable standards in racing” and said it is the law in every state.

“Those tickets will never be good,” he said of Maximum Security betting slips.

Email Jon Hale at jahale@courier-journal.com; Follow him on Twitter at @JonHale_CJ

This article originally appeared on Louisville Courier Journal: What happens to bets placed on Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit?

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