01/19/2018 5:53PM

Belmont remains under quarantine after second positive herpes test


OZONE PARK, N.Y. – A quarantine of a barn at Belmont Park will remain in place as a horse who tested positive for the equine herpesvirus (EHV-1) on Jan. 9, re-tested positive for the virus this week, the New York Racing Association announced on Friday.

The quarantine is placed on barn 44 at Belmont, which houses about 40 horses trained by Linda Rice and six by trainer David Duggan. Those horses will not be permitted to race and may only train after the general horse population has completed its training regimen. Since Jan. 12, the Belmont training track has closed at 10 a.m. – 30 minutes earlier than normal – and re-opened at 10:15 a.m. for horses in barn 44 to train.

One of the horses in that barn, Do Share, was entered to run in Saturday’s $100,000 Fire Plug Stakes at Laurel Park. He will be forced to scratch as will Belmont-based runners Chief Lion and Life in Shambles as Laurel – as well as Parx – are not accepting horses based at Belmont to ship and run while the quarantine is in place. Clowney, a horse based at Parx trained by Patricia Farro, will likely scratch from Saturday’s $100,000 Jazil Stakes at Aqueduct.

The horse who tested positive for the EHV-1 virus – an unraced, unnamed 3-year-old male trained by Rice – remains in isolation in barn 4 at Belmont Park. He does not exhibit any neurological signs of the disease. Thus far, all horses in barn 44 who may have been exposed to the affected horse are considered to be afebrile and asymptomatic, according to NYRA.

The horse will be re-tested next week after which a determination will be made whether NYRA can lift the quarantine.

“It’s frustrating, but that’s where we are,” Rice said.