Kentucky Derby

Who is Bob Baffert and will he have a horse race in the 2024 Derby?

Here's what to know about Baffert and if he'll be at Churchill Downs for the next Kentucky Derby.

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You can't always mention the Kentucky Derby without bringing up one of horse racing's famed figures.

With the 150th Run for the Roses looming on Saturday, some may wonder if horse trainer Bob Baffert will be involved.

Baffert has a long list of accomplishments in the Triple Crown, but they haven't always come without controversies.

Here's what to know about Baffert and his involvement in the 2024 Derby:

Who is Bob Baffert?

Baffert is an American racehorse trainer from Nogales, Ariz. He is tied for the most Kentucky Derby wins of all time. He also has won multiple times at the Preakness and Belmont Stakes.

How old is Bob Baffert?

Baffert is 71 years old. He was born on Jan. 13, 1953.

How many American Classic races has Bob Baffert won?

Baffert has helped win 17 races in the Triple Crown series, including two Triple Crowns in 2015 and 2018. Here's the full list of his American Classic triumphs:

  • Kentucky Derby: 1997, 1998, 2002, 2015, 2018, 2020
  • Preakness Stakes: 1997, 1998, 2001, 2002, 2010, 2015, 2018, 2023
  • Belmont Stakes: 2001, 2015, 2018

Baffert won his first Triple Crown in 2015 with American Pharaoh before achieving it again in 2018 with Justify.

What is Bob Baffert's most recent American Classic race win?

Among the Derby, Preakness and Belmont, Baffert most recently was involved in National Treasure's Preakness win in 2023. It marked his eighth Preakness triumph and 17th total in the Triple Crown series.

Will Bob Baffert be at the 2024 Kentucky Derby?

Baffert will not be at the 2024 Derby. In July of 2023, Churchill Downs tacked on another year to Baffert's two-year suspension from the race after 2021 Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit, trained by the Arizona native, failed a post-race drug test and was later disqualified.

Baffert, though, will be available to enter horses in the Preakness and the Belmont races that transpire in the weeks following the Derby.

Why is Bob Baffert controversial?

Despite Baffert's successes on the track, controversies have followed off of it. Including Medina Spirit's situation in 2021, Baffert's horses have been linked to at least 30 failed drug tests in the last four decades. Five of those came in a 13-month span around 2021. Subsequent fines have also been prominent.

What is Bob Baffert's career earnings?

Through 2023, Baffert has collected $351 million in purse earnings with 3,358 race wins, per the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame.

As aforementioned, his fines have been worth roughly $20,000, via The Washington Post.

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