04/06/2016 8:40AM

Has Twentytwentyvision finally seen the light?

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Benoit & Associates
Twentytwentyvision runs Saturday in the Thunder Road Stakes, his first start since injuring his mouth in a gate accident last September.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Twentytwentyvision has a score to settle with the starting gate when he returns in the Grade 3 Thunder Road Stakes on Saturday at Santa Anita. The one-mile turf race will be his first start since a messy late scratch on Sept. 27.

A 5-year-old trained by Richard Mandella, Twentytwentyvision was among the favorites last fall in the City of Hope Mile following a runner-up finish in the Grade 1 Eddie Read and a highly rated allowance win. But after he loaded into the gate for the City of Hope Mile, it all went wrong.

“Something goosed him,” Mandella recalled. “He jumped forward, stuck his nose in those little bars, and when he pulled out, it ripped his lip. The whole lip, across the bottom, was hanging by a thread.”

It was not pretty. Twentytwentyvision also sustained a cracked jaw and lost a tooth. Twentytwentyvision required too many stitches to count.

It was not the first time Twentytwentyvision had acted up. He had thrown a fit at the gate and was scratched from his scheduled debut in late 2014 at Los Alamitos.

“He constantly needs schooling in the gate,” Mandella said. “He’s not bad, he just gets a little antsy.”

Mandella was concerned that the experience might affect Twentytwentyvision.

“I thought, ‘Boy, he’ll be really bad in the gate,’ but he’s behaving now,” he said. “Maybe he learned a lesson.”

A four-time winner from eight starts, Twentytwentyvision might not be 100 percent fit for his comeback Saturday. That’s okay. Call it a victory if he breaks cleanly.

Mandella said Twentytwentyvision “might run well, but he hasn’t run in a long time.”

“Just get him back running. … He is a nice horse.”