Take Control Returns to Work Tab, Again

First foal out of 2002 Horse of Year Azeri, now 5, breezed at Santa Anita April 5.

Take Control, the first foal out of 2002 Horse of the Year Azeri and a $1.9 million purchase for Kaleem Shah in 2009, recorded his first work in more than seven months April 5 at Santa Anita Park.

Now 5, Take Control has battled injury problems since he was a juvenile. He has raced only once, a 1 1/2-length victory in a maiden special weight race at Santa Anita Dec. 30, 2009. Because of his regal pedigree, the son of A.P. Indy was expected to do big things but several setbacks along the way have kept him from racing.

Trained by Bob Baffert, Take Control breezed four furlongs in :49 3/5 April 5 at Santa Anita, his first official breeze since last September.

Shah said Take Control has had a pair of surgeries on his shins over the past two years. The latest one was performed by Dr. Larry Bramlage at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital in Lexington late last year. That was followed by time off and rehab at KESMARC in Versailles, Ky.

“We gave him all the time in the world after the surgery and he’s just been jogging and galloping a lot,” said Shah. “Now he’s ready to get back to serious work again. I got a text from Bob this morning saying he worked very well, so hopefully this time he’ll make it back and showcase his talents.

“The first time he had surgery it wasn’t done to the extent that it should have been done. This time they put a couple of screws in his shins to tighten them. They drilled a little deeper and were able to make the bone stronger. His mother Azeri was the same way; her delayed start was because of shin problems.

“We’re confident that he’s going to make it back this time.”

Shah said a tentative goal for Take Control’s return to racing is at the end of June.

Take Control, who was bred in Kentucky by The Allen E. Paulson Living Trust, was consigned to the Keeneland September 2008 yearling sale by Hill ‘n Dale Sales Agency, agent, but was bought back for a record $7.7 million.

Shah bought him out of the Keeneland April 2009 2-year-olds in training sale.