Maximum Security jockey suspended 15 days

1:23 PM ETKatherine TerrellESPN Staff Writer CloseJoined ESPN in 2016
Previously covered the Saints for the Times-Picayune from 2013-2016Jockey Luis Saez has been suspended 15 racing days by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission for his ride on Maximum Security in the Kentucky Derby.Saez will appeal the decision, his attorney said.Maximum Security became the first horse in the history of the 145-year-old race to be disqualified from first place due to a race riding incident. He was placed 17th behind Long Range Toddy after stewards determined that he interfered with several horses by drifting out in front of War of Will in the final turn.According to the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, Saez was cited for “failure to control his mount and make the proper effort to maintain a straight course thereby causing interference with several rivals that resulted in the disqualification of his mount.”Saez was represented by attorney Ann Oldfather during a film review session with Churchill Downs stewards on May 10. Oldfather also presented a video to the stewards arguing that seventh-place finisher War of Will and his jockey Tyler Gaffalione were actually responsible for the incident.While the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission allows jockeys to appeal their suspensions, it does not allow the stewards’ decision on the disqualification of a horse to be appealed. An attempted appeal by the owners of Maximum Security was swiftly denied last week.If Saez’s appeal is not successful, he will not be able to ride at any track during the 15-day period, which includes the dates May 23-27, May 30-June 2, June 6-9, and June 13-14.In 1968, Dancer’s Image became the first winning horse to be disqualified from the Kentucky Derby when he tested positive for a substance that was banned at the time. He was disqualified three days after the race, and the matter was taken to court. After several years of legal battles and appeals, Forward Pass, who had been elevated to first place after the disqualification, was upheld as the winner.Neither Maximum Security nor Country House, who was placed first after the disqualification, will race in the Preakness.

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