01/20/2014 3:43PM

Aqueduct: Trainer Schettino fined, suspended

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Barbara D. Livingston
Trainer Dominick Schettino was suspended from Feb. 4-8.

OZONE PARK, N.Y. – Trainer Dominick Schettino was suspended 10 days and fined $2,000 by the stewards for refusing to run his horse Ghostly Vision in a race here Jan. 10, necessitating a scratch.

The suspension was reduced to five days, Feb. 4-8, for Schettino waiving his right of appeal.

Ghostly Vision was the 7-5 morning-line favorite for a $20,000 claiming race here. According to state steward Stephen Lewandowski, Schettino didn’t have a legitimate reason to scratch but would not permit the horse to be treated with Lasix, medication on which he was listed to run.

According to Anthony Bonomo Sr., who owns Ghostly Vision with his wife, Mary Ellen, Schettino mistakenly entered the horse in that claiming race. Ghostly Vision, who was competitive in second-level New York-bred races, had never before been offered for a claiming price.

“It was an honest mistake,” Bonomo said. “We told the truth. The rules are the rules. I feel bad for Dominick. He never had a suspension before. The rules are the rules.”

Bonomo is a New York Racing Association board member and chairman of the board’s safety committee. Bonomo also is the chairman of the New York Task Force on Jockey Health and Safety.

This type of fine and suspension is rare but not unprecedented. In 2000, trainer Al Stall got a similar penalty for not running Bright Valour in an allowance race at Saratoga. Stall scratched from that race to run in the Forego Stakes a week later.

WWW More than 1 year ago
Steep fine when you consider drug overages set trainers back $500. NYRA is the "cherry-picking" capital. Everyday, at least a dozen scratches on the board. The other day, Mean Season, a stakes horse in the making, was scheduled to run in a race with 10 others. I'm guessing 5 trainers decided they didn't want to face him, so they scratched out of the race. Unfortunately, the heavy favorite came down with a temperature and was also taken out. A big, competitive field of 11 entered ended up with 5 leaving the gate. You see it all the time at NYRA. Whenever there is a big, competitive field, you can bet the bank at 1/9 that at least 3 are going to be withdrawn. It's either cherry-picking or the horses are so pumped up with drugs that their immune system causes them to be sick every other week.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
To run or not to run should be up to the trainer. Mr Schettino is not the first person the NYRA bullied.
Ed More than 1 year ago
If it was truly a mistake, there's no way he should have run. The fine was probably too high ,considering,