02/09/2011 5:38PM

Kirk Ziadie quietly returns to south Florida


Trainer Kirk Ziadie, who has not raced in south Florida since August 2009, has been given one stall at Gulfstream Park with the hopes of rebuilding his business as the meet progresses.

Ziadie was deadlocked atop the trainer standings at Calder during the summer of 2009 when he was asked to leave by Calder management shortly after receiving a 60-day suspension for having a horse in his care, Not Acclaim, test positive for the tranquilizer acepromazine out of a race at Gulfstream Park more than two years earlier. Ziadie originally appealed the suspension but then dropped his appeal once ordered off the grounds.

Ziadie resurfaced last winter at Laurel but ran only 58 horses in 2010, winning eight races. Ziadie, who has won two Calder and two Tropical-at-Calder training tiles, has a career win percentage of 25 percent and 508 lifetime victories.

“Right now I have only one stall,” said Ziadie. “I wound up taking over about 30 horses in Maryland from owners who couldn’t pay their bills, but I wound up dispersing most of them and sending the rest to Ocala. There just aren’t any stalls available around here right now. Even Palm Beach Downs is full.”

One prominent owner who said he may give Ziadie a chance is Frank Calabrese.

“A friend of mine recommended him to me, I’ve met Kirk, I like him, and I’m thinking about giving him some horses to train,” said Calabrese.