10/12/2011 1:42PM

Los Alamitos: California bans clenbuterol in Quarter Horses


The bronchial dilator clenbuterol will be banned for use in Quarter Horses at Los Alamitos effective Friday, following a rash of positives earlier this year.

The decision to ban the medication was announced by the California Horse Racing Board during the summer. Rick Arthur, the racing board’s equine medical director, said there have been eight positives this year for an illegal form of clenbuterol believed to be imported from Mexico. That clenbuterol differs from the type approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in horses, which now will also be banned in California.

“It’s been a widespread problem, particularly in Quarter Horse racing in the Southwest,” Arthur said.

The medication is designed to help small-airway diseases.

“It’s not being used for that,” he said. “It’s being used as a replacement for anabolic steroids.”

Most anabolic steroids are banned for use in horses in California.

The enforcement of the ban occurs at a pivotal time on the track’s stakes schedule. There are trials for the Los Alamitos Super Derby on Saturday and the Golden State Million Futurity on Sunday, with those races showcasing some of the nation’s top 3-year-olds and 2-year-olds.

Saturday’s Super Derby trials will include Pushing Dazies, the runner-up in the Grade 1 Golden State Derby in August, and a half-sister to Jess You and I, who won his seventh Grade 1 race in the Los Alamitos Championship last Sunday.

Pushing Dazies, owned by Double Bar S Ranch and trained by Cody Joiner, is a filly who has won 2 of 5 starts. She made her stakes debut in the Golden State Derby, finishing three-quarters of a length behind Docs Apollo.

“We think she’ll be really tough,” said Dawn List, whose family owns Double Bar S Ranch.

Docs Apollo is entered in the trials, which will be his first start since the Golden State Derby. “We gave him time off, worked him and waited for the trials,” trainer Jaime Gomez said.

In the Super Derby trials, Gomez also starts Pk Fire, the winner of the El Primero Del Ano Derby in April. More recently, Pk Fire was fourth against older horses in the Go Man Go Handicap on Sept. 11, losing by a neck.

Jess You and I gets Champions spot

Jess You and I earned an automatic berth for the $750,000 Champion of Champions on Dec. 10 with his victory in the Los Alamitos Championship.

Jess You and I won the 2008 Champion of Champions, the year he was named champion aged gelding and overall champion aged horse. Last year, Jess You and I was fourth in the Champion of Champions.

Two unplaced horses in the Los Alamitos Championship have earned automatic berths to the Champion of Champions. Good Reason Sa, who was fourth, qualified by winning the Los Alamitos Championship in February. Snitcher, sixth on Sunday, qualified with a win in the Vessels Maturity in June.

Other qualifiers are Ryless Boy (Remington Park Championship), Llano Teller (All American Derby), Fovee (Mildred Vessels Handicap), and Louisiana Senator (Refrigerator Handicap at Lone Star Park).

Automatic berths are available later this fall to the winners of the Bank of America Challenge Championship at Los Alamitos on Oct. 29 and the Super Derby on Nov. 6. Any remaining spots will be determined in time trials on Nov. 19.