09/21/2015 1:10PM

Lady Eli making progress, heads to farm

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Barbara D. Livingston
Before developing laminitis, Lady Eli won the Grade 1 Belmont Oaks Invitational on July 4 to remain undefeated.

ELMONT, N.Y. – Lady Eli’s road to recovery from laminitis will travel through Kentucky as the undefeated 3-year-old filly left Belmont Park on Monday by van and was headed to Dell Ridge Farm in Lexington, where she will be turned out for two months.

If all goes well, trainer Chad Brown said Lady Eli could return to him at the end of November at Palm Meadows, a training center in south Florida, and be put back in training for a possible 4-year-old campaign.

Brown said Lady Eli is getting closer to being fitted with regular shoes. He also said Lady Eli has been walking for about an hour a day for several weeks at Belmont, but she’s getting antsy to do more.

“She’s looking to get out more, so we made the decision to give her 60 days over at Dell Ridge and let her enjoy the fall in Kentucky … getting out in the paddock, getting some much-deserved turnout in the field,” Brown said Monday at Belmont Park. “We couldn’t possibly be happier with her condition here as she’s leaving; she looks tremendous. When you look at her now, it looks like you could put the tack on her and lead her over to the paddock.”

Lady Eli has won all six of her races, including last year’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf. Most recently, she captured the Grade 1, $1 million Belmont Oaks Invitational here on July 4.

While walking back from the test barn following that race, Lady Eli stepped on a nail, and she developed laminitis in both of her front feet. Lady Eli was treated by podiatrists Robert Ange and Brian Fraley. Earlier this month, Agne was killed in a vehicular accident in Vermont. Fraley, based in Kentucky, will oversee Lady Eli’s care.