Trainer Scott Lake has begun serving a 30-day suspension after a Delaware Superior Court denied his appeal of the ruling handed down by Delaware Park Thoroughbred Racing Commission in June.
The commission issued the ban after the Lake-trained Secret Run, who won the fifth race at Delaware on June 7, tested positive for clenbuterol. It was the second clenbuterol positive for Lake at the Delaware meeting. Lake began serving the suspension Nov. 16.
Lake, currently the nation's leading conditioner by number of wins with 528 (through racing of Nov. 25), alleged that a disgruntled former employee administered the clenbuterol to Secret Run. At the court hearing on Nov. 20, Lake asked for a second continuance, stating he needed more time to find the employee and question him, but the court denied his request. Deputy Attorney General James J. Hanley, who represented the commission, said that Lake did not show any evidence that the former employee might have been involved.
Lake also had clenbuterol positives in March at Philadelphia Park and Aqueduct, and one in July at Belmont Park.
The suspension will likely cost Lake the opportunity to set a new record for number of winners by a trainer in one season. With horses stabled in Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania and New York, the Bensalem, Pa. resident was attempting to break the mark of 555 wins, set by Steve Asmussen in 2004.