Court setback clouds Bob Baffert’s horse racing future

Bob Baffert is winning races and losing ground.

Corniche’s victory in last Friday’s American Pharoah Stakes at Santa Anita established the Baffert-trained 2-year old as a leading contender for next May’s Kentucky Derby, the 15-1 favorite according to theoddsmaker William Hill Nevada. But a federal court ruling Tuesday further clouded the Hall of Fame trainer’s prospects of competing in the 2022 Triple Crown and could cause some of his clients to reassess their commitments.

In dismissing Baffert’s charge of contempt against the New York Racing Association, Judge Carol Bagley Amon cleared the way for a disciplinary hearing that could enable NYRA to follow through on a thwarted attempt to suspend the trainer from the three racetracks it operates: Aqueduct, Belmont Park and Saratoga.