03/22/2007 11:00PM

Trainer Richard fined for medication positives

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Trainer Chris Richard has been fined a total of $1,500 after postrace tests showed two horses in his care tested positive for the anti-inflammatory naproxen, according to rulings issued by Oaklawn Park stewards on Friday.

Both horses, Explosive Pride and Pocket Bandit, won their races but have been disqualified and placed last. The purses for those races have been ordered redistributed.

Naproxen is considered a Class 4 drug, according to the Association of Racing Commissioners International. The classification includes therapeutic medications expected to have little ability to affect performance. Naproxen, sold for human use under the brand name Aleve, is a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory.

Richard was fined $500 for the first offense, from the fifth race Feb. 9, and $1,000 for the second, from the sixth race Feb. 15. He requested a split sample for each horse be sent off, and both came back positive, according to the ruling. Richard said he will not pursue any further challenge.

"It's very disappointing and very frustrating," Richard said. "I followed the recommended withdrawal period and still came up with trace levels."

Richard is the third-leading trainer at Oaklawn. He won six consecutive races here from March 11 to 15.