10/26/2013 4:45PM

Santa Anita: Suspended jockey Baze denied reinstatement

Benoit & Associates
Suspended jockey Tyler Baze was denied reinstatement by the Santa Anita stewards Saturday.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Jockey Tyler Baze, who has been suspended since June for failing a sobriety test at Betfair Hollywood Park, has been denied reinstatement by the Santa Anita stewards for failure to comply with the terms of his summertime suspension, according to a ruling issued Saturday.

In a two-paragraph ruling, the stewards said Baze failed to undergo evaluation with the Winners Foundation, which aids people in racing with substance-abuse problems. Saturday’s ruling states that Baze must be evaluated by the Winners Foundation “and abide by the terms set forth by that organization” before a fitness-for-license hearing will be held.

Baze did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment Saturday.

On Oct. 19, Baze attended a fitness-for-license hearing with stewards Scott Chaney, Kim Sawyer, and Tom Ward, requesting reinstatement. At the time, California Horse Racing Board investigators argued that Baze should not be allowed to request reinstatement until Oct. 19, 2014, because of an arrest for driving under the influence in Santa Rosa, Calif., in late July.

Baze was involved in a traffic accident in Santa Rosa and was jailed for five days for driving under the influence and driving with a suspended license. Baze had a blood-alcohol level of 0.354 percent, more than four times the California legal limit of 0.08, according to California Highway Patrol records.

At the Oct. 19 hearing, Baze’s attorney argued that the jockey should be reinstated under a conditional license that requires random substance-abuse testing.

On July 7, Baze was suspended 120 days, retroactive to June 13, for failing the sobriety test at Hollywood Park, a violation of a provisional license he signed with the racing board in 2012.

The terms of the suspension dictated that Baze attend a 60-day in-house residency rehabilitation program, undergo evaluation with the Winners Foundation, comply with the terms of a testing agreement with the racing board, and attend a fitness hearing with the stewards.

Baze did not attend the evaluation meeting with the Winners Foundation, the stewards said Saturday.

The July suspension was the second for Baze in two years. Baze, 31, was suspended at Del Mar in August 2011 for failing to take a breath test. The terms of that suspension required a 30-day residency rehabilitation program. Baze did not immediately comply with those terms and was reinstated under a conditional license in October 2012.

At the time of his suspension last summer, Baze was in the midst of an excellent 2013 season. On June 13, he was tied for the lead in the jockeys’ standings at the spring-summer meeting at Hollywood Park. Baze is best known for winning the Eclipse Award as the nation’s outstanding apprentice jockey of 2000.