ALBANY, N.Y. — Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Rick Dutrow has filed a federal lawsuit trying to overturn his 10-year ban from racing in New York for drug violations.
The lawsuit, filed this week in U.S. District Court in Brooklyn, says the 53-year-old has been "irreparably harmed" by the New York State Racing and Wagering Board for what he says is effectively a lifetime ban. He's seeking $10 million in damages for lost earnings, punitive damages and an order lifting the ban.
Dutrow trained Big Brown to Kentucky Derby and Preakness wins in 2008.
"Any and every horse Dutrow becomes involved with during the 10 years his license is revoked ... disqualifies the horse from any racetrack throughout New York state," the civil court complaint says.
Lee Park, a spokesman for the New York State Gaming Commission, the agency that succeeded the racing board, said Wednesday they haven't been served with legal papers and declined to comment.
The three-member state board cited infractions including syringes containing an analgesic and sedative found in Dutrow's desk and an analgesic found in the urine of his horse Fastus Cactus in November 2010 after it won at Aqueduct.
Dutrow told a hearing officer he didn't know how the syringes got into his desk. A blood test of Fastus Cactus didn't show any of the analgesic, and Dutrow's expert witness theorized the urine test may have been contaminated.
Dutrow had unsuccessfully appealed the revocation in state courts, with the punishment put on hold until the New York Court of Appeals in January declined to hear his latest appeal.