Tracy Hebert, a successful rider at Kentucky tracks until he was banned from Churchill Downs in 2000 due to a history of substance abuse issues, has been granted a license to ride by the Kentucky Horse Racing Authority, the Louisville Courier-Journal reported March 28.
Hebert has been licensed in Louisiana since 2004 and has ridden at Fair Grounds, a Churchill-owned facility, without incident. He has also ridden in other states while banned from Churchill.
Jim Gates, Churchill’s general manager, said the Louisville track is comfortable with allowing Hebert back in the irons.
“The KHRA decided he was licensable and asked us if we were going to let him ride," Gates told the Courier-Journal. "We decided to lift the ejection. He had to undergo evaluation and affidavits from his treatment program. The authority talked to the Louisiana racing commission. Everyone got to a comfortable level that with conditions and continued drug testing, he's not dangerous to anyone and it would be safe to let him ride."
No reason was given for Hebert’s ejection at the time, although he had been under the watchful eye of the former Kentucky Racing Commission for a considerable amount of time due to issues with substance abuse.