Trainer Howard Fined for Procaine Positive

Trainer Neil Howard was fined $1,000 and his Alumni Hall was disqualified from a third-place finish in the Mineshaft Handicap (gr. III) after the horse tested positive for the prohibited drug procaine, Fair Grounds stewards ruled March 10.

Alumni Hall did not hit the board in Saturday's $500,000 New Orleans Handicap (gr. II). The Mineshaft, which was run Feb. 12, was Fair Ground's final prep race prior for the New Orleans.

Howard told the Times-Picayune of New Orleans that he had treated Alumni Hall with penicillin to prevent infection of a cut but had stopped using the drug five days prior to the race. Penicillin can cause a positive test for procaine,

"I'm embarrassed beyond words," Howard told the newspaper.