O'Neill milkshake case discussed on Thursday
USA: Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Doug O'Neill could be facing up to a six-month suspension when the California Horse Racing Board (CHRB) meets to discuss a case involving one of his horses testing positive to a high level of total carbon dioxide.
The board meets in a closed session on Thursday at Hollywood Park, where O'Neill's stable is based. He won't attend the meeting that occurs on the same day he turns 44.
The board's monthly meeting comes in the midst of I'll Have Another's bid to become horse racing's first Triple Crown winner in 34 years.
The colt, trained by O'Neill, won the Derby and the Preakness and is preparing to run in the Belmont Stakes on June 9.
However, it is unlikely any penalty will be announced on Thursday and CHRB spokesman Mike Marten said earlier this month that even if O'Neill is penalised, it wouldn't interfere with him saddling I'll Have Another in the Belmont.
O'Neill was cited by the racing board after his horse Argenta tested for a high level of TCO2 in its blood after finishing eighth in a race at Del Mar in August 2010.
"I know it's a privilege to be a trainer, it's not a right," O'Neill said.
"I take that very seriously. You got to have rules and I respect rules, but when you get faulty science involved, it costs a lot of money unfortunately, but you've got to fight it and that's what we're doing."
While maintaining his innocence, O'Neill has said he spent $250,000 vigorously fighting the charge, his third total carbon dioxide violation in California and fourth in his 25-year career.