Trainer Jane Cibelli will serve a 60-day suspension and face sanctions from Tampa Bay Downs
following the conclusion of an investigation by a Florida regulator.
The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation Division of Pari-Mutuel Wagering entered a consent order Sept. 20, issuing the 60-day suspension of Cibelli. The investigation and suspension follow private veterinarian Orlando Paraliticci injecting a horse trained by Cibelli, Raven Train, less than 24 hours before the horse was scheduled to start in a Jan. 27 race at Tampa Bay.
Tampa Bay Downs announced Sept. 25 that it will not grant stall space to Cibelli or any of her employees for the remainder of the 2013-14 race meet. She will not be permitted to enter races from an off-track location either.
The track also said Paraliticci, who received a 90-day suspension from the regulator, will not be permitted to practice at Tampa Bay for the remainder of the 2013-14 meet. The track said investigators also discovered non-FDA approved clenbuterol in Paraliticci's van.
The track said two of its employees, a veterinarian and veterinarian assistant, witnessed the injection of the Cibelli horse and immediately reported the incident to the stewards. An investigation was undertaken by the local Thoroughbred Racing Protective Bureau agent.
"I accept what it is but I am not guilty," Cibelli said. "If you read the consent order, I had no admission of guilt. It's only under the ultimate trainers' insurer rule that I am guilty."
Tampa Bay Downs said it wanted to wait for the regulator to conclude its investigation before issuing any of its own sanctions.
"Unfortunately the process consumed months before it was resolved and created much concern as to whether there would be any consequences to the trainer resulting from the race-day medication of one of the horses trained by her," said a statement issued by Peter Berube, Tampa Bay Downs vice president and general manager. "Tampa Bay waited until the FDPMW concluded its investigation and is now taking actions."