2021 Derby Winner Medina Spirit Dies During Workout


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Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit dies after collapsing in California.

Taylor Koch, Staff Writer

On Monday, 2021 Derby winner Medina Spirit collapsed during a workout, led by trainer Bob Baffert. Starting his work in 2000, at least 74 horses have died in Baffert’s care, which is more than all but two of hundreds of trainers. Statistics prove that his horses have died at a much more higher rate than the top ten trainers with the most horse deaths. Before the Kentucky Derby this year, 21 picograms of Betamethasone were found in the horse. Though he still ran, many questions were still not answered on whether or not steroids were used, and why it was fair for him to still run. After the colts death, the spotlight hit Baffert.

Supposedly passing because of a heart attack, Medina Spirit will be remembered as one of the greats. Being only three when he died, the horse industry will honor him as hard working, and “tough colt to beat”. In an interview with Baffert, he explains how many memories he had with the horse, and proves that an animal is not just an animal but a friend. “Medina Spirit was a great champion, a member of our family who was loved by all, and we are deeply mourning his loss… I will always cherish the proud and personal memories Medina Spirit and his tremendous spirit.”

A necropsy, autopsy preformed on an animal has been done on the colt however, results have not been shared with the public yet. Since the horse was inspected earlier this year for drugs (mentioned above) it was only fair to question whether or not there could have been a substance causing the mysterious death. On a more positive note, the horses’ remembrance will reign throughout not just the industry, but the country.

With the Derby five months away, Baffert is in hopes to have a better year this year though he is banned from Churchill Downs for two years due to the drug test last year with Medina Spirit. People in the horse industry have already stated their opinions on the matter, but hope for Baffert to return, only in a fair way this time.