10/15/2013 12:10PM

Tampa Bay Downs: Navarro barred for 2013-14 meet


Jorge Navarro, a leading trainer in Florida and New Jersey who is currently serving a 60-day suspension, will be denied stalls at Tampa Bay Downs through next summer, and the track will not accept any of his entries during that time, the top official of the track said Tuesday.

Peter Berube, president of the track, said that the track decided to put the ban in place after Navarro accepted a 60-day suspension from the Florida Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering last week. The suspension was based on six post-race positives for the regulated medication flunixin that were detected following races at Tampa Bay’s 2011-12 meeting, nearly 18 months ago.

Tampa Bay is scheduled to open its 2013-14 meet Dec. 4, running through May 4. However, Navarro will be denied stalls and entries through June 30, Berube said, because Tampa is expected to run one or two days during the summer of 2014.

Navarro is the second trainer that Tampa Bay has barred for the upcoming meet. In late September, Tampa barred another leading trainer, Jane Cibelli, when she accepted a 60-day suspension from the state after a veterinarian was caught administering a substance to a horse she trained on race day. The vet, Orlando Paraliticci, also has been barred.

Like Cibelli, Navarro will be allowed on the grounds during the ban, but “only in the public places,” Berube said.

Navarro won 33 races from 94 starts at Tampa’s 2012-13 meet. He had 25 stalls at the track last year, Berube said.