07/05/2013 3:52PM

Allen Milligan suspended 15 days for Banamine positive


One of the largest stables in the Mid-South region of Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas will be dormant for the next two weeks. On Sunday, trainer Allen Milligan will begin serving a 15-day suspension for a medication infraction and said during that time he would not transfer horses to other parties in an agreement with his owners. Milligan on Saturday was expected to win the training title at Lone Star Park near Dallas.

The Lone Star board of stewards, in a ruling dated Wednesday, cited Milligan for a flunixin positive following Wagson’s win in the fourth race April 18. Wagson was disqualified and the purse was ordered redistributed, while Milligan was suspended and fined $500. Flunixin, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory sold as Banamine, is a Class 4 medication violation.

“We’ve been to the test barn with 80 [horses] and treat them exactly the same way,” Milligan said.

Milligan, 47, added that he would like to see a national medication policy in place. Texas currently has no threshold level for flunixin, and because there is a zero-tolerance policy for the medication, penalties are greater than in jurisdictions that set flunixin penalties according to overage levels.

The Association of Racing Commissioners International, for example, has recommendations that range from a warning to a fine of $1,000, based on overage levels, for a first flunixin case in a 365-day period. On second offense, a 15-day suspension is recommended. Texas is working to change its policy, officials said, but it must go through the rulemaking process.

Milligan, who has a division of horses at Louisiana Downs, said he discussed stable plans with his owners, and they agreed to cease racing through the suspension, which ends July 21. The suspension is Milligan’s first in nearly 15 years, he said, with his last suspension also being for flunixin.

Milligan will have divisions of his stable at Remington Park and Retama Park later this year. He also is a regular at Oaklawn, where he won the title in 2009.