Desormeaux won't ride Dullahan at Belmont

May 21, 2012|By Steven Petrella | The Baltimore Sun

Kent Desormeaux will not ride Dullahan in the Belmont Stakes June 9, the Des Moines Register reported Monday.

Javier Castellano, who leads all jockeys with $7.9 million in earnings this year, will replace the three-time Kentucky Derby winner.

Desormeaux has struggled with alcohol problems in the past and failed a breathalyzer test last Friday at Belmont Park. He was pulled off Tiger Walk for the Preakness Stakes.

“We are confident that Kent will address his issues and be back at the track better than ever and we hope to ride him when that happens,” Donegal president Jerry Crawford told the Register. He added that the Iowa-based company has enjoyed their association with the jockey and hopes to resume that connection in the future.

The Hall of Famer gave a drunk radio interview while on vacation in and was pulled from a horse for failing a breathalyzer test both in 2010. Last year, he was arrested for intentionally striking a peace officer at Saratoga Race Course.  

Dullahan’s trainer, Dale Romans, told the New York Daily News that Desormeaux expressed concerns at Belmont about not being put on his horses. Romans listened, but his jockey didn’t come through.

“I am very concerned for him,” Romans told the Daily News. “He’s not a bad man and he’s one of the best riders in the country, but he’s definitely making some wrong personal life decisions.”

Dullahan finished third in the Kentucky Derby and sat out the Preakness. He will likely contend and challenge I’ll Have Another in the third leg of the Triple Crown.

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