Horse Racing

More instructors testify against mermaids as testing continues

Two current trainers testified January 27 at Dr Seth Fishman’s equine doping trial that they raced with illegal performance-enhancing drugs coming from a forced veterinarian. sin.

Testimony from Adrienne Hall and Jamen Davidovich highlights the seventh day of Fishman’s trial on charges of adultery and mislabelling of conspiracy charges. Fishman is one of 27 individuals charged in the case and the first to be tried. Those charged include two celebrity trainers – Jason Servis, who is awaiting trial, and Jorge Navarro, who pleaded guilty and was sentenced to five years in prison.

Hall, of Monroe, New Jersey, trains horses at the Sunshine Meadows harness racetrack in Florida and last raced a Standardbred last month in New Jersey. Davidovich, also the owner, raced mainly in the Mid-Atlantic in 2020-21. He started this year in New York and Ohio and says he approaches the sport more as a hobby.

The two told a jury of eight women and four men that they had contacted Fishman in 2017 and 2018 for the sole purpose of obtaining PEDs that would not appear in the post-match test. race.

“His fame preceded him,” says Davidovich, 31, of Pennsylvania.

Hall testified Fishman gave her a PED called a VO2 Max, which she used to outwit a horse and win a harness race in March 2019. Prosecutors had testified that VO2 Max increased the oxygen levels of the horses, allowing them to run faster and longer but at a risk to their safety and well-being.

The jury heard a clip of FBI wiretapping that showed Hall excitedly telling Fishman about first place.

“I wish you could watch the race,” Hall told the vet. “He was wonderful. He dominates. He is a completely different animal. I was very happy. ”

Hall added the horse’s last quarter time was 27 seconds.

“What is it usually?” Fishman asked.

“Usually: 28 or: 29 and struggling,” she replied.

Hall testified that the PED was a gift from Fishman. She said she believed that was the case because Fishman wanted her to connect him with two trainers she knew.

One of those trainers was Todd Pletcher, Hall of Famer, who ran a large stable.

His name was revealed under cross-examination by Fishman’s attorney, Maurice Sercarz.

Prosecutor Sarah Mortazavi, who initially questioned Hall, never asked Hall to reveal her name during her in-person examination.

At the start of her direct testimony, Hall said that before earning her trainer degree, she worked on two Thoroughbred ranches and for Pletcher’s stables in an administrative position, not with horses.

Hall told Sercarz that although she told Fishman she would contact Pletcher, she never did.

Mortazavi then asked why as she questioned the witness again.

“He would never take my advice or opinions,” Hall testified, referring to Pletcher. “I would never approach him about things like that.”

Hall was in the witness stand, testifying against Fishman as part of a non-prosecution agreement with prosecutors. They agreed not to prosecute her for doping horses.

Davidovich testified without any such agreement. Instead, he invoked the Fifth Amendment to the right not to testify and was then forced by Judge Mary Kay Vyskocil to testify under immunity. Under the waiver, a witness cannot be charged with any crime they admit.

However, Hall and Davidovich could face sanctions from regulators following their testimony. Servis and Navarro were suspended from racing, as were other indicted individuals.

Davidovich told the jury Fishman began offering him PED after a meeting at a sushi bar in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. He said there was a third person in the meeting, someone he described as “my owner.”

When asked by prosecutor Anden Chow about the subject of PEDs, Davidovich replied: “We are talking about different things to make the horse run better.”

Davidovich says that when they got to know each other, Mermaid complained to him about Navarro. Prosecutors said Fishman was one of Navarro’s banned PED suppliers.

“He said Navarro owed him a lot of money, and he would cut him off if he didn’t pay,” the witness testified. “He also said he didn’t want to [Navarro] knocks down the whole ship because he has a big mouth.”

Davidovich said Fishman was referring to a video shot at Monmouth Park in which Navarro and one of his owners bragged after winning a race that Navarro was “Juice Man.”

Davidovich said he stopped doping horses in 2018 after meeting Dr. Steve Allday, a renowned thoroughbred veterinarian.

“He was the first person in the business who led me in his direction and taught me another way to get into horse racing,” he testified.

He added: “I know what I did was wrong, and I wanted to move on in a different way.”

Leading industry publications Thoroughbred are working together to cover this important trial.

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