Wilkes Plans Return to Track for Fort Larned

Wilkes Plans Return to Track for Fort Larned
Photo: Coglianese Photos
Fort Larned
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After monitoring Fort Larned   for the past few days, trainer Ian Wilkes said he is pleased with the manner in which the 2012 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner has emerged from his fall in the March 9 Gulfstream Park Handicap (gr. II).

The 5-year-old son of E Dubai   stumbled and fell two jumps out of the starting gate, unseating jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. before picking himself up and completing the Gulfstream Park course riderless, well ahead of his rivals.

"Everything's good," said Wilkes, whose stable star grabbed a left front quarter before falling head first to the track. "It's superficial. It's not real bad."

If all goes well, Fort Larned could return to training at Palm Meadows Training Center by the weekend.

"I'll see how he's doing tomorrow," Wilkes said. "He'll likely go back on Friday or Saturday, if he's OK."

Wilkes said he'd nominate Janis Whitham's homebred for the $100,000 Skip Away Stakes (gr. III) scheduled for March 30, but no plans for a next start have been made.

"We're not sure yet, he's not been back to the track yet," said Wilkes, who saddled Fort Larned for a victory in last year's Skip Away. "We'll wait until he goes back to the track and go from there."

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