The two-time Horse of the Year has just one work remaining for trainer Charlie LoPresti before he vans to Canada and a return engagement in the Sept. 13 Ricoh Woodbine Mile (Can-IT), a race he has won twice.
It will be the first start back for the 8-year-old Wiseman's Ferry gelding since he won the Shadwell Turf Mile (gr. IT) last October at Keeneland, after which he was diagnosed with a non-displaced fracture at the bottom of the cannon bone of his right front fetlock. Wise Dan has been breezing steadily at Keeneland since returning to the worktab July 17, with a run in the Oct. 31 Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT) at the Lexington oval as his ultimate goal. He is a two-time winner of that event.
"He has one more work and to Canada he goes," LoPresti said. "I don't want to get ahead of myself, but I don't anticipate any problems. He looked really good this morning."
Wise Dan's return to training has been carefully overseen each step of the way by specialists from Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital near Lexington. He was most recently examined Aug. 24 by Dr. Larry Bramlage, who gave the green light to continue with his return to the races.
"Dr. Bramlage is real happy with him, and we worked him again this morning really strong," LoPresti said. "He did it real easy and cooled out fine, full of energy."
Wise Dan, a six-time Eclipse Award winner bred in Kentucky by owner Morton Fink out of the Wolf Power mare Lisa Danielle, has 23 victories and two seconds from 31 starts, good for earnings of more than $7.5 million. He was named Horse of the Year in 2013 and 2012, and swept the titles for champion turf male and champion older male in both of those seasons as well. Last year he won the Maker's 46 Mile (gr. IT), the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (gr. IT), and the Bernard Baruch along with the Shadwell despite having his season interrupted by colic surgery.