Trainer Raymond Stifano was told to leave Laurel Race Course yesterday.
J. Fred Colwill, the state steward, ordered the New England trainer out and said Stifano is "barred in Maryland." Stifano trained two horses who were switched three times last winter, instigating a grand jury investigation.
Colwill learned that Stifano was at Laurel when Stifano telephoned to ask about the late scratching of Surge and Loumar Lee from the fourth and fifth races yesterday. Stifano trained both horses until his license was revoked in Pennsylvania on charges unrelated to the switch of horses in Maryland.
"I thought that I could come to the Laurel track to talk with Wendy Martin, the trainer now in charge of the horses while I'm under suspension," Stifano said.
The two horses the stewards scratched yesterday belong to Palmeadow Farm, which is owned by Joseph Palladino. The two horses involved in last winter's switch were also owned by Palladino.
Asked why the horses were scratched yesterday, Colwill said: "Our information is that the horses may have been entered by Stifano, which would be against the rules. Only Miss Martin can act as the trainer now that Stifano is suspended . . . I can tell you that he is barred in Maryland."