01/20/2016 1:06PM

Laurel: Two jockeys suspended


Jockeys Nik Juarez and Xavier Perez have been suspended after the Maryland Racing Commission last Friday conducted drug tests in the Laurel Park jockeys’ room.

Perez tested positive for amphetamines and was taken off the remainder of his Friday mounts. Before he is allowed to ride again, he will have to undergo drug counseling and further testing through a program administered by the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association. Once he is released from counseling, he will have a hearing before the Laurel stewards.

Juarez is suspended because he did not submit a urine sample to commission representatives on Friday.

When Juarez was asked to test, he said he explained to officials that he had been reducing and had to make 116 pounds in race 7. He was given until the end of the day to supply a sample. After his last ride, Juarez said he was unable to locate an official and left the track.

“I made a big mistake,” Juarez said Wednesday.

Juarez met with track stewards Saturday morning. He has not been allowed to ride since. Juarez said he went to a private testing firm on Saturday and had a urine test taken. Juarez will meet with the stewards in the coming days. It is not clear when he will be able to ride again.

Juarez, 22, rode six winners at Laurel on Jan. 11 and is 7 for 55 at the current meet, which began on Jan. 1. He had a successful season in 2015, winning 118 races. He finished third in the Monmouth Park standings last summer and was fifth at the Laurel Park fall meet.

Perez, 28, has 735 North American wins since 2007. He is 0 for 16 this year and won 67 races in 2015.

becky bronx More than 1 year ago
The whole game is crooked, from the stewards to the pari mutual pools that are tampered with during the races--
Cliff Amyotte More than 1 year ago
If I had to ride horses I would be on drugs too! LOL
Ray Sousa More than 1 year ago
These jockeys make a mockery of the sport. So one guy tests positive and the other tries to dodge the test and comes up with a pathetic excuse. He was reducing really ?. so why not reduce little by peeing in the sample cup. Was unable to locate an official .so between the 7 th and last race the track was abandoned by the officials. Come on . They should just give them both a 6 month suspension with the condition that they check in to a rehab facility .and then make it clear that next time it's adios forever.
Ray Sousa More than 1 year ago
Otherwise these guys will be riding in a few days and I along with other fans will be wondering if the bad ride was intentional or drugs induced.
Vince Lentini More than 1 year ago
good to see you believe in due process...after all jockeys never reduce weight right Ray...an angry clown
Ray Sousa More than 1 year ago
good to see you're blind or naïve..so during 6 hours of live racing he couldn't he could not find 5 min to pee in a cup. Please give me a break. im not angry im just realistic i understand his point of view its the same as that od a kid who gets told he need to go to the school office and knowing he is in trouble avoids it and goes home. Hopping the problem goes away. in real life it does not. but in racing because the stewards are soft and cut from the same cloth (many are ex jockeys) the next day they pretend that nothing happened.
Kenny Black More than 1 year ago
ray ,Is all you do all day is scour the DRF for story's to post about in a sour an negative fashion?? I cant remember reading a story on this site that you didnt have something to say negative an overly opinionated about and boy I wish I lived such a rightous life as you must have , let alone had so much free time that i could just do as you seem to,but if I did god I hope to hell Id find something a little more constructive and positive to do with it ,volunteer at the ymca or something pal really put all that knowledge to good use get a hobby whatever.
TEDK215 More than 1 year ago
its hard to be positive and write nice things about a game with soooo many levels of corruption. and last time I checked, there was this thing called freedom of speech. even for the people from the drf who constantly write negative stories about the very game that pays their bills.
Michael Infurna More than 1 year ago
The owners should be on drugs too supporting this industry!!
Helaine More than 1 year ago
One day it's the druged horses the next day it's the jocks.Any wonder why this game is in a bad way
John Agnello More than 1 year ago
Helaine, let me get this straight. The pro baseball player juices, as does the pro football player, the pro basketball player does, but, doesn't inhale his choice of drug. The pro boxer, hockey player and just about every other sport has their rule violators. Does this also mean all of these professional sports are in a bad way and shouldn't be fan supported? Assessment is: there are good and bad apples in every walk of life. Let's reward the good ones and send a message to the bad ones. With that Kirk Zaide comes to mind. How could a racing commission allow a trainer that has 20 plus positive tests continue to train and race horses? Then again, what owner would give someone like this a training bill every month? Clean up this racing industry by having stiffer more harsher fines for the rule benders! Send them a message that racing now has implemented the zero tolerance law.
Mark Saleby More than 1 year ago
Thank the lord that the owners,trainers and gamblers would all test clean as whistles.