Top quarter horse trainer suspended for 16 years

Feb. 14, 2014 at 11:30 PM
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ALBUQUERQUE, Feb. 14 (UPI) -- The New Mexico Racing Commission has suspended a prominent quarter-horse trainer after Viagra was found in four animals, officials said.

John Stinebaugh was barred from racing for a total of 16 years, the Albuquerque Journal reported. The commission also imposed a $40,000 fine and ordered Stinebaugh to surrender $8,000 in purses.

The commission's executive director, Vince Mares, said the board of stewards issued the sanctions Monday. He said a hearing was held Saturday.

Four horses trained by Stinebaugh tested positive for Sildenafil citrate, the active ingredient in Viagra, July 5 and July 6 for the $1 million Rainbow Futurity and $1.05 million Rainbow Derby at Ruidoso Downs. Stinebaugh says a compounding pharmacy mistakenly added the drug to a paste used on the horses.

The horses involved were My Dancing Angel, owned by Jimmy Kirk Crouch and Martin O. Ramos; Bikinni Bombshell, owned by Celina DeJesus Molina; and Dynasty Edition, owned by Allen Streelman of Dutch Masters III Stables; and PJ Chick in Black, owned by Susan Marie Taylor, Dennis Charles Bowen, John Louis and Mary Lynn Smith. They are banned from racing for 90 days, until May 11, and must be examined by a veterinarian before they can return to the track.

Stinebaugh had until Thursday to appeal to the commission for a stay. He could also go through the courts.

The American Quarter Horse Association has ranked Stinebaugh as one of the Top 10 trainers in the United States.

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