Sorcerer's Stone to Have Ankle Surgery

(from Churchill Downs notes)
Sorcerer's Stone, winner of the Arlington-Washington Futurity (gr. III) and sixth to Stevie Wonderboy in the Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) at Belmont Park, is set to undergo what is described as "minor" ankle surgery on Thursday. The colt will miss a planned start in the $200,000-added Kentucky Jockey Club (gr. II) on Nov. 26.

Trainer Patrick Byrne said the son of Gulch would travel to Hagyard-Davidson-McGee Clinic in Lexington, Ky. for the removal of a bone chip from the colt's left ankle.

Robert H. Shepard and Carrol J. Castile own Sorcerer's Stone.

"He came out of his race with just a little change in his left ankle and we X-rayed him and have decided to stop on him and do a little ankle surgery on him," said Byrne. "It's not a big deal. It's a very simple procedure. It's just a little tiny fragment."

Dr. Robert Hunt is scheduled to perform the procedure on Sorcerer's Stone on Thursday. Byrne said the colt is expected to take 60 days off before he returns to training at Gulfstream Park with an eye toward making the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and spring classics.

"We'd have liked to have gone to the Jockey Club, but if you get later into the year you're kind of pushed going into the spring of next year," Byrne said. "God willing, if he's good enough to be a Derby horse we certainly want to give him the opportunity to get there."

Byrne described the injury as a "stress fracture" or a "non-displaced chip" in the ankle. The trainer does not consider the chip to be a reason for Sorcerer's Stone's disappointing run in the Juvenile, which was his first loss in four career starts.

But jockey Mark Guidry told Byrne after the race that Sorcerer's Stone seemed to struggle over the Belmont Park surface.

"Sixth wasn't awful," said Byrne. "We beat eight horses and it's the Breeders' Cup. We got beat 12 lengths and if we can move up on that in the spring of the year that would be great."