12/13/2011 3:26PM

Hollywood: Tyler Baze still suspended, has not entered rehab

Benoit & Associates
Tyler Baze was suspended 90 days for failing to take a Breathalyzer test.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. – Two weeks after he could have resumed riding, jockey Tyler Baze remains suspended because he has not completed the terms of a ruling issued by Los Alamitos stewards in October for failing to take a Breathalyzer test during the summer.

According to Los Alamitos stewards, Baze has yet to fulfill a 30-day residency rehabilitation program that was part of a ruling they issued on Oct. 28. The ruling stated that Baze, 29, was suspended for 90 days, retroactive to Sept. 1, for failing to take a Breathalyzer test at Del Mar. The jockey was cited for failing to abide by a testing agreement, conduct detrimental to racing, and for lying to Del Mar stewards about the circumstances of a missed Breathalyzer test on Sept. 1.

The 90-day term of Baze’s suspension ended on Nov. 29, and the jockey could have resumed riding then if he had completed the 30-day residency rehabilitation program. The Oct. 28 ruling also stated that Baze must undergo counseling administered by the Winner’s Foundation, an organization that supports racing industry participants with substance abuse problems.

Last weekend, Los Alamitos steward George Slender said that Baze had not entered a rehabilitation program. “As far as we know, he hasn’t started it yet,” Slender said.

A phone message left with Baze on Tuesday was not returned. His agent, Craig O’Bryan, said on Tuesday that he has not spoken with the rider in the last week.

Baze failed a Breathalyzer test at Del Mar in August, which led to a testing agreement between the jockey and the California Horse Racing Board that allowed the racing board to demand Baze take Breathalyzer tests at its discretion.

Baze was ordered to take a Breathalyzer test on Sept. 1, but left the track without doing so. He later said he was involved in a traffic accident, but admitted that the story was false.

The case was heard by Los Alamitos stewards Slender, Albert Christiansen, and James Dreyer because Del Mar stewards Scott Chaney, Kim Sawyer and Tom Ward were actively involved in Baze’s case on the morning of Sept. 1, seeking his whereabouts and later hearing his admission that he had not been in a traffic accident.

The champion apprentice of 2000, Baze won 10 races from 134 mounts at Del Mar during the summer.

Baze’s prolonged absence is his latest personal setback this year. In May, his first cousin, Michael Baze, a former leading rider at Arlington Park, Del Mar and Hollywood Park, died of an accidental drug overdose.