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Coglianese Photos/Adam Mooshian

Vyjack Breezes Easy Half at Fair Hill

Grade II winner on work tab for first time since suffering lung infection in Wood.

Pick Six Racing's Vyjack, who has been recovering from a lung infection detected after a third-place finish in the Wood Memorial (gr. I), returned to the work tab April 19. He breezed an easy half in :51 3/5 over the dirt track at Fair Hill training center.

The gelded son of Into Mischief  had his four-race unbeaten streak broken in the Wood when he was beaten a total of one length by Verrazano  and Normandy Invasion . At first it was announced he had bled a "2" on a scale of "1-to-5," but he was later diagnosed with a lung infection, for which he was treated in the hyperbaric chamber at the Fair Hill Equine Therapy Center at Fair Hill.

Vyjack has been under the watchful eye of Bruce Jackson, who operates the rehabilitation facility at Fair Hill.

"Everything went beautifully, just the way we wanted," trainer Rudy Rodriguez said of the April 19 work. "So far, so good. Bruce has a very nice facility here and the horses are well taken care of. We wanted to give him an easy half-mile just to see where he was and to make sure everything we're doing is good. It was just a maintenance breeze. We don't have to do much with him; he's nice and fit, and we just have to keep him happy and healthy."

Rodriguez said the plan is to ship Vyjack to Kentucky April 20, arriving at Churchill Downs the morning of April 21.

"We'll just take it from there and see how he's doing," he said. "It all depends on how the weather is. We just have to make sure we're doing the right thing. The plan is to work him one time there, but all depends on how he's feeling. If he needs to do a little bit more then that's what we'll do."

Vyjack, bred in Kentucky by Machmer Hall, previously won the Jerome (gr. II) and Gotham (gr. III) over the inner surface at Aqueduct Racetrack, as well as the overnight Traskwood on the main track.