12/27/2005 12:00AM

Hines receives stay of penalty

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Trainer Nick Hines has received a stay of a 30-day suspension and $2,500 fine that he received on Dec. 19 after one of his starters at Del Mar in August 2004 tested positive for the drugs meprobamate and hydroxycarisoprodol, metabolites of the banned muscle relaxant carisoprodol.

Hines's suspension was scheduled to run from Thursday through Jan. 27, but the stay allows Hines to continue operating his stable until an appeal is conducted. The appeal process would take several months.

The suspension was issued by Hollywood Park stewards Darrel McHargue, Kim Sawyer, and Tom Ward. They conducted a hearing on the case in mid-December.

The positive occurred in a postrace test taken from Vinziyan, who finished third in the seventh race at Del Mar on Aug. 21, 2004.

Vinziyan earned $3,000 in the race, which has been ordered to be redistributed among the horses promoted to third through fifth place - Door to Houston, Bold in a Storm, and Abnegate.