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Trainer Barred From 2014 Breeders’ Cup

Published: October 6, 2014 11:30 am ET

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Thoroughbred trainer Doug O’Neill has been barred from entering horses to the upcoming Breeders’ Cup championships due to a recent suspension handed down by the New York Gaming Commission.

A report by FOX Sports explains that the Breeders’ Cup is enforcing the ban under the organization’s ‘convicted trainers rule.’ The rule states that the organization can bar trainers that have been found guilty of a Class 1 or 2 medication violation within a 12-month period leading up to the Breeders’ Cup races, which will take place on October 31 and November 1 at Santa Anita in California.

The article goes on to explain that O’Neill, of I’ll Have Another fame, recently reached a settlement with New York’s racing commission regarding a Class 2 medication violation. The positive test, for Oxazepam, had come with an O’Neill-trained horse, Wind of Bosphorus, who won a claiming race at Belmont Park on June 2, 2013.

O’Neil’s settlement in New York would have seen his suspension kick in on November 3, two days after this year’s Breeders’ Cup was contested.

The FOX Sports article has cited O’Neill as saying, via his publicist, that he accepts the Breeders' Cup decision and that he will not appeal it.

"I now realize that delaying the suspension so that I could participate in the Breeders' Cup was a mistake," FOX Sports has quoted O'Neill as saying.

O’Neill was also quoted as saying, "One of the reasons I wanted to resolve these allegations was to not be a distraction to the racing community," adding, "I truly care about the horses under my care and the sport that we all love and do not wish for my suspension to do any more harm than it has already done."

O’Neill was thrust into the North American spotlight in 2012 when his colt, I’ll Have Another, was poised to take a shot at the Thoroughbred Triple Crown. The colt was set to tackle the third and final leg, the Belmont, but had to be scratched due to swelling in his front left tendon.

(With files from FOX Sports)

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