06/19/2013 1:18PM

Monmouth Park: Itsmyluckyday to miss four months

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Tom Keyser
Itsmyluckyday, the runner-up to Oxbow in the Preakness Stakes, will miss four months after fracturing a bone in his pelvic area in last Sunday's Pegasus Stakes.

OCEANPORT, N.J. – Preakness Stakes runner-up Itsmyluckyday will be sidelined for four months with a slight fracture in his pelvic area.

The colt sustained the injury Sunday at Monmouth Park in the Grade 3 Pegasus Stakes for 3-year-olds. After moving into position to challenge odds-on favorite Verrazano down the backstretch, Itsmyluckyday took a bad step, and jockey Mike Smith quickly pulled him up.

“He was cruising up there, and all of a sudden, ‘What was that?’ Then I grabbed a hold of him,” Smith said after the race. “The leg was intact; he just wouldn’t put weight on it.”

After Verrazano cruised to an easy victory, Itsmyluckyday was vanned off the track to trainer Eddie Plesa Jr.’s barn. The initial X-rays in the stall failed to detect the fracture. The damage to the ilium bone was discovered Wednesday at the Mid-Atlantic Equine Medical Center in Ringoes, N.J.

“It’s as good as we could have hoped for,” Plesa said. “It’s a little fracture.”

Plesa said he expects to have the colt back at Monmouth on Thursday or Friday.

“I’m told the success rate of a full recovery is outstanding,” Plesa said. “I heard that of 29 horses that have had this issue, 27 of them came back to run just as well as they had before, so that’s very promising.”

Itmyluckyday will spend at least the first month of his recuperation at Monmouth.

“He’ll stay here for the next 30 days or so,” Plesa said. “I’m in no rush to put him on a van and send him back to Florida at this point.”

Plesa praised Smith for quickly responding, preventing further damage to Itsmyluckyday.

“Mike did a great job,” Plesa said. “It’s times like that when experience really matters.”

The four-month recuperation takes Itsmyluckyday out consideration for the remaining major 3-year-old stakes, including the Grade 1, $1 million Haskell Invitational here July 28.

His major accomplishments this year were victories in the Grade 3 Holy Bull Stakes and the Gulfstream Park Derby, along with runner-up finishes to Orb in the Florida Derby and to Oxbow in the Preakness. He was 15th in the Kentucky Derby.