04/27/2014 3:06PM

Purse redistributed after Masochistic tests positive for sedative

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ARCADIA, Calif. – A portion of the purse of a claiming race for maidens March 15 at Santa Anita has been redistributed after fifth-place finisher Masochistic tested positive for the sedative acepromazine, according to a ruling issued Sunday by Santa Anita stewards.

In addition, jockey Omar Berrio’s ride on Mascohistic has come under scrutiny by the stewards, who may conduct a formal hearing on the manner in which the 4-year-old first-time starter was ridden.

No hearing has been scheduled on Berrio’s ride or on the positive test for acepromazine, which is listed as a class 3 medication. Trainer A.C. Avila could face a fine or suspension for the positive, which was found in a post-race urine test. Positives for medications in classes 1, 2, or 3 are subject to a purse redistribution.

Masochistic earned $1,120 for owners Los Pollos Hermanos Racing and Santa Ines Stable. The stewards ordered the money forfeited and redistributed to Durango Flier, who finished sixth.

The stewards conducted an informal hearing March 16 with Berrio. The stewards were “concerned that Mr. Berrio prevented his horse from giving his best race,” according to the weekly minutes the stewards submitted to the racing board. The stewards called for a racing board investigation into the matter and a post-race test for Maschostic, which revealed the positive.

Avila said in an interview in early April that Masochistic is a difficult horse to ride and that the intention was for Berrio to preserve his mount to the stretch before asking for an effort. Masochistic was beaten 4 1/4 lengths at 8-1. The race was won by 4-5 favorite Whine for Wine.

Avila said Masochistic was plagued by knee and tibia injuries, which postponed the start of his career.