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Updated on 10/16/2012 2:36PM
Paynter leaving New Bolton, headed to Fair Hill center in Maryland
Haskell winner Paynter will leave Pennsylvania's New Bolton Center on Sunday and head to Fair Hill Equine Therapy Center in Maryland and then to WinStar Farm in Kentucky, owner Ahmed Zayat said Friday evening.
The 3-year-old colt, who has been hospitalized since Aug. 26 battling colitis and early-stage signs of laminitis, probably will stay at Fair Hill Equine Therapy in Elkton, Md., for three to four weeks before shipping on to WinStar, where he likely will remain for at least two to three months, Zayat estimated.
Regarding the decision to give Paynter about a month in Maryland before heading to WinStar, Zayat said, "The reason I am doing that is that I'm a little nervous, and I don't want to ship him too long, even though he's doing everything right and everyone is kind of bullish and comfortable. We've been very conservative, and I'd rather take it very easy. In three or four weeks, when he's better, we'll ship him to Kentucky where the weather should be better."
Zayat said he also wanted Paynter to remain near his New Bolton Center veterinary team, located in Kennett Square, Pa.
"Fair Hill is very close to New Bolton, so that's one other reason," Zayat said.
Zayat has sent other horses to WinStar near Versailles, Ky., in the past, including Nehro and Bodemeister.
Regarding Paynter's plans after his rehab, Zayat said, "I want to be very careful and very clear about that. I want to manage my own expectations before anybody else's expectations. Although Paynter has defied the odds, has been a trooper, and has been a warrior, I want the horse to tell us that he's ready, I would love to see him back at the racetrack where he belongs, but I am not going to either rush him or send him if he's not ready. During his rehab, if he's telling me, 'No, I'm not ready' or 'I want to be a daddy' or 'I want to be a horse or be retired,' then let it be. It's important that we bring stars for the game, for the fans, and for all of us, but I'm going to let him tell us."
Earlier Friday, Zayat tweeted: "We are declaring VICTORY!!! Paynter is a rare breed of Thoroughbred horse that has the determination, strength and heart. Paynter has beaten colitis, laminitis, and a nasty abscess and today we are proud of our special colt."
Zayat's tweets revealed that the 3-year-old colt's last set of diagnostics, performed Friday, showed "his temp is normal, his blood work is perfect, his feet are sound and healthy, his lungs sound great. All in all we have a very happy and healthy horse. He has gained an additional 11 pounds in the last two days on top of the 24 pounds before that. his medical team is very confident of his full recovery."
Paynter underwent surgery Oct. 3 to remove a 35-centimeter area of abscessed tissue from his cecum, a pouch in the horse's large intestine. Paynter has been hospitalized since Aug. 26, when he was admitted to the Upstate Equine Medical Clinic in Schuylerville, N.Y., with fever and diarrhea that veterinarians diagnosed as colitis. He later showed early signs of laminitis in three legs, but he recovered from that with aggressive treatment.
Before that, Paynter first showed signs of illness two days after his July 29 Haskell victory, when he shipped to New Jersey's Mid-Atlantic Equine Medical Center with what his connections later said they believed was pneumonia. He developed diarrhea but that improved, and he returned to light training with Bob Baffert two weeks later, only to enter the Upstate Equine Medical Clinic Aug. 26.
Why would the DRF produce an article full of speculation and conjecture? Oh i know, its because they are smarter than those who think they should. @Horse Cent Why was there no definitive diagnosis given on the sick horses in Illinois?
I agree that this horse should not race again. He's done enough and survived. If any animal or human loses over 20% of their body weight in a very short time, which Paynter did, they lose muscle.
This is utterly ridiculous. There are so many posts/blogs from so many that think something stinks, re this Paynter case. Use of EPO and whatever, yet ALL my posts seeking some support to investigate Paynter's freaky Haskell and suspicious aftermath, DRF DELETED/REMOVED THEM. DRF, your publication is part of the problem in horse-racing, and probably will never be part of the solution. It is clear to me that the connection's spin on this ordeal was no more than cover-up. I support comments from Thomas Cook, Horse Cents, Terry Marshall, et al. I know, DRF will delete this one soon.
Excellent news! So happy to hear Paynter is recovering from successful surgery. He certainly deserves rehab and 'spa' treatment at this point. I hope his connections continue to do what is best for Paynter.
I know a lot of people want to see Paynter retired and with good reason. But if he can make a full recovery, and win a big stakes, think of what a feel good, insirational story this would be. Overshadowed by his stablemate, then gets his shot on the big stage only to be run down at the end, then crushed the Haskell only to come down with these illnesses. How could anyone ever root against him. I hope he comes back strong and provides inspiration to thousands
It seems like this colt is doing well which is extremely great news. One thing i must say in regards to Paytner. No matter how well this horse recovers in the long run. There is no way i would ever put him back in training to race. The reason being a horse that has been through severe digestive issues such as Paytner will always remain suspect. Why risk anything when he has overcome so much. Best of luck to you Paytner!!
This horse has made a miraculous recovery from near death. Don't look a 'gift horse' in the mouth... retire him to a life of leisure. He's more than earned it.
Great news, but If I were Zayat I would also be cautious. Paynter was in really, really bad shape not that long ago. Of I'll Have Another, Union Rags, Bodemeister and Paynter, the one with arguably the most justification for retirement, Paynter, is the one that hasn't been retired.
The hen doesn't cackle till the egg is laid.
Thinking about the various stories that came out regarding Paynter's condition While I'm not sure that tweeting every last thing is necessarily the most accurate way of getting information out there, the inconsistencies, the moments of hope followed by finding out his condition was worse than thought, seem very consistent to me with veterinary care of an animal that has a serious and somewhat confusing condition. It is just not always that easy to diagnose what is going on. It's happened to me with pets (sadly not always with as good results as it seems Paynter had, and hopefully will continue to have). What I'm trying to get at is I don't see any conspiracy or coverup with the different moment to moment descriptions of Paynter's illness. Just the limits of Twitter and the ups and downs of veterinary care.
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