05/06/2012 11:49AM

Kentucky Derby 2012: Take Charge Indy to have surgery for chip in ankle, will miss summer races

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Tom Keyser
Take Charge Indy will have surgery this week to remove a chip from his left front ankle.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Florida Derby winner Take Charge Indy came out of his 19th-place finish in Saturday’s Kentucky Derby with a chip in his left front ankle and will miss the major summer races, trainer Pat Byrne said Sunday morning.

Byrne said Take Charge Indy would undergo surgery early this week to have the chip removed. After 60 days of inactivity, Take Charge Indy will resume training, and Byrne hopes to get the horse back for a fall campaign.

“We’d love to make the Breeders’ Cup Classic with him,” Byrne said Sunday morning. “We’ll have to get a prep into him end of September, early October. Main thing is we have an excellent prognosis with him, and we hope to be back in the fall.”

Byrne said that Take Charge Indy would have the surgery performed at the Woodford Equine Hospital in Versailles, and then do his layup time at nearby Fairlawn Farm, operated by Dr. Bill Baker.

Byrne said he hoped to have Take Charge Indy back under tack in July.

Though jockey Calvin Borel thought Take Charge Indy may have bled during the Derby, Byrne said an endoscopic examination indicated that he did not.

“Looking at the race, he was going so easy down the backside, Calvin had a great position and at the three-eighths pole his head came up and he said he switched leads on him,” Byrne said.

Take Charge Indy was one of several horses based in south Florida this winter that did not fare well in the Derby. Though Dullahan and Went the Day Well finished third and fourth, respectively, Union Rags (seventh), Hansen (ninth), Alpha (12th), El Padrino (13th), Gemologist (16th), Trinniberg (17th), and Prospective (18th) were extremely disappointing.

Trainer Todd Pletcher said Gemologist, who entered the Derby 5 for 5 including a victory in the Wood Memorial, was going to spend a week at WinStar Farm in Lexington, before rejoining him at Belmont Park. El Padrino, the Risen Star winner, was flown to Belmont on Sunday. Neither is under consideration for the Preakness, but Pletcher said the Belmont Stakes on June 9 is possible for either or both.

“Both horses seemed to come back in good order, no physical excuses,” Pletcher said. “They both had totally opposite trips. Gemologist broke great, he was first out of the gate, he put himself in position. He may have been a touch rank before he got settled, but he turned loose of the bridle pretty early. El Padrino broke horribly and tried to make steady progress, but couldn’t make an impact.”

Alpha, the Wood Memorial runner-up also was flown back to New York on Sunday. Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin said he felt his horse “melted in front of our eyes” in the paddock due to the heat and large crowd.

McLaughlin said jockey Rajiv Maragh told him he liked the trip Alpha was getting early on in the race, but “down the backside he felt like he never fired and was one-paced.”

McLaughlin said Alpha would not go on to the Preakness, but is possible for the Belmont Stakes.

Shivananda Parbhoo, owner of Trinniberg, said his horse “couldn’t get the distance.” He was to van back to Calder on Monday and will prepare for the Grade 2 Woody Stephens, a seven-furlong race on the Belmont Stakes undercard.