Derby, Preakness Runner-Up Retired with Shoulder Injury

Bodemeister, the runner-up in this year's Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes, has been retired after being diagnosed with an injury to his left shoulder, the colt's connections announced today (Aug. 21). The colt has begun treatment and a full recovery is expected in the coming months, but the bay Virginia-bred would not have been able to return in time for major races at the end of 2012.

"Bodemeister has a peripheral nerve injury which caused atrophy of the infraspinatus muscle in his left shoulder," Larry Bramlage, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACVS, a surgeon at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital, said in a release. "This made us look at something unusual, rather than a normal lameness. His legs are perfect but he was clinical when jogging to the left. After ruling out neck issues with X rays and a myelogram, we feel confident in the diagnosis. It will take approximately 60 days to heal."

According to Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, the injury likely occurred a couple of weeks ago at the Del Mar Thoroughbred Club, located in Del Mar, Calif., when Bodemeister stumbled during routine training. It was enough to throw his exercise rider to the ground.

"He was just never quite right after that and we couldn't figure out what was going on with him," said Baffert. "It's extremely unfortunate. We wanted to win the Breeders' Cup with him."

Bodemeister will stand at stud at WinStar Farm, near Versailles, Ky. Initial plans are for the colt to rehabilitate through mid-October at WinStar before being available for inspection by breeders.

"You must always put the horse first, and it is in Bodemeister's best interest to retire at this time," said owner Ahmed Zayat. "The sportsman in me is very disappointed because the sky was the limit for his racing career. He is the most brilliant horse that I've had the privilege of owning and my family and I will miss him thrilling us in the afternoons. But every end is a new beginning, and we'll now look forward with great anticipation to racing little Bodes in the future."

About the Author

Evan Hammonds

Evan Hammonds is the Executive Editor for The Blood-Horse.

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