Bob Baffert is the face of horse racing in the United States. He’s won seven Preaknesses, three Belmont Stakes, and five Kentucky Derbyes, and his Triple Crown sweep in 2015 with American Pharoah was one of the greatest achievements in the sport. But this fame has not come without some trouble. In the spring of 2012, he had a heart attack in Dubai. Later that year, two of his horses tested positive for drugs. It appeared that Baffert was facing suspension for a drug violation. A hearing officer recommended a two-year ban, which would go into effect once the 90-day ban in Kentucky had been overturned. If this happens, he won’t be able to compete in the Breeders’ Cup at Keeneland in November.
The Kentucky Racing Commission announced that Baffert had been suspended for 90 days. According to officials, Baffert had seven medication violations in three states. After the Arkansas Derby in July, two of Baffert’s horses – Gamine and Charlatan – failed drug tests. While the drugs were the same as the ones that had caused the failures in Arkansas, Baffert and the owners of the two horses were incensed. Consequently, the horses were shifted to other trainers.
When the suspension began, Baffert vacated the Santa Anita facility where he had trained his horses. He also removed signage from the track. However, in the aftermath of the suspension, it was revealed that he had used a pain patch on the horses he was working on. This was an issue that was causing discomfort to the horses, and it is the reason why Baffert’s horses have had trouble competing since 2010.
In August, Baffert was banned from all racing for a year, as well as all horse races, including the Kentucky Derby. His ban isn’t set to expire until the end of 2018. That means Baffert is able to enter the summer meeting at Del Mar. But he has to be licensed in each state where he will be competing.
At the time of the hearing, Baffert’s lawyers told the hearing officer that he was administered the anti-inflammatory in the race as he tried to treat a rash. The only problem with that theory is that the official only cares about whether the drug was present on the day of the race. Despite that, Baffert didn’t appeal the fine.
Baffert has a net worth estimated at $10-15 million USD. He has a wife and four children from his previous marriage. The couple has one son, named Bode, who was born in 2004. They live in California. Jill is active on several boards, including the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA), the Old Friends Foundation, and the Parent Board at her son’s school.
She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Broadcasting from Middle Tennessee State University. She has worked as a television reporter and anchor for WLKY-TV in Louisville, KY. Now she’s a stay-at-home mother. Though she is a prominent figure in the world of horse racing, she still spends her free time focusing on her career as a horse trainer.