10/16/2017 2:36PM

Irap continues recovery after surgery

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Barbara D. Livingston
Irap, injured during the Pennsylvania Derby, continues to recuperate at the New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, Pa.

Irap continues to recuperate at the New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, Pa., three weeks after having surgery to repair the fractured sesamoids of his left front leg.

Irap was injured during the Pennsylvania Derby on Sept. 23 at Parx Racing. He finished second in the Grade 1 race but was pulled up nearing the turn on his gallop-out by jockey Mario Gutierrez and vanned back to his stall.

Irap was transported to the New Bolton Center the following day, and Dr. Dean Richardson operated on him Sept. 25. Trainer Doug O’Neill arranged for Dr. Ryan Carpenter of the Equine Medical Center in Cypress, Calif., to fly in and assist with the surgery, which involved fusing Irap’s ankle and using metal plates to stabilize his lower leg.

On Sept. 27, O’Neill shared a video of Irap being walked in a grassy area of the clinic. Over the past few weeks, he has said Irap is “hanging tough” and has had his “ups and downs” since the surgery.

O’Neill said Richardson informed him Monday that “he was happy with Irap’s progress.” O’Neill acknowledged Irap remains in serious condition.

“He still has a ways to go before he is out of the woods,” O’Neill said. “But he’s in the best of hands.”

Earlier Monday on his Facebook page, O’Neill said he and his staff appreciated all of the inquiries people have made about Irap and that “Dr. Dean is happy with Irap’s progress but we are always cautious when reporting on long-term recoveries. Irap is having a good day today.”

Irap won the Grade 2 Blue Grass at Keeneland as a maiden in April. In his starts prior to the Pennsylvania Derby, he finished third in the Travers and won the Grade 3 Indiana Derby and Grade 3 Ohio Derby. A son of Tiznow, he has earned more than $1.6 million for Paul and Zillah Reddam.

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