By: Marcus Hersh
Veteran trainer Frank Kirby was handed a one-year suspension after one of his runners tested positive for methamphetamine, but Kirby claims the contamination was environmental and has appealed the ruling.
The Illinois Racing Board suspended Kirby for all of 2017 after All My Secrets, the second-place finisher in the first race Nov. 4 at Hawthorne, returned a positive test for methamphetamine.
Kirby said Wednesday he had appealed the ruling with the IRB but that a hearing date had not yet been set. He claimed the positive test was clearly a case of environmental contamination.
“Of course I appealed it because I’m innocent,” he said.
Kentucky-based trainer Kellyn Gorder is serving a 60-day suspension for methamphetamine that was reduced from 14 months after Kentucky officials determined that the positive test was the result of environmental contamination.
Kirby, a former president of the Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, won 16 races from 139 starters in 2016. His first starters as a licensed trainer came in 1976.