Kentucky will not immediately approve the license application of trainer Rudy Rodriguez, who is pointing Gotham Stakes (gr. III) winner Vyjack to the Kentucky Derby presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) May 4 at Churchill Downs.
The Kentucky Horse Racing Commission will routinely approve some license requests, but if stewards see potential red flags on the past records of an applicant they will send the application to the KHRC's licensing review committee. New York-based Rodriguez is seeking a license in Kentucky for the first time.
Commissioner Burr Travis, who chairs the licensing committee, said the stewards sent Rodriguez's application to the committee for review. Last month New York state regulators imposed a 20-day suspension and fined Rodriguez $7,500 after flunixin was found in his horses in two different races last year. A review of ThoroughbredRulings.com, shows Rodriguez has at least three additional medication positives since March 2011 in Maryland, New York, and Pennsylvania.
"He made a license application and it was reviewed by the stewards," Travis said. "Based on his past actions, they wanted the license committee to make the decision on if he should be licensed."
A representative of Rodriguez did not immediately return phone calls from The Blood-Horse on Thursday, April 11.
Rodriguez, leading trainer by wins and purse earnings at the current Aqueduct Racetrack meet, is a former employee of Rick Dutrow Jr., the Derby-winning trainer who is serving a 10-year suspension after New York regulators determined he committed a long list of rule violations. The KHRC licensing committee denied Dutrow a license in 2011.
The license review is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on April 16 at the KHRC offices. The license review committee will review three other applications—Glen Copp, Jeremiah O'Dwyer, and Jeffrey Scott Raley.