Slight Fracture Sidelines Storm Flag Flying

(from Belmont track notes)
Storm Flag Flying, the 2002 juvenile filly champion, will be out of action for approximately 60 days after a small fracture was discovered in her right hind leg at the Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital in Lexington, Ky.

"We've sent her home," said trainer Shug McGaughey said. "We discovered a small - and I mean very small - fracture of her right hind cannon bone. She was never lame, but I knew something wasn't right. I couldn't figure it out, so we sent her to Rood and Riddle as a place to start. That's what they found."

A regally bred daughter of Storm Cat out of My Flag, Storm Flag Flying won all four of her starts as a 2-year-old, including the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) at Arlington Park. In her 2003 debut, she ran second by 5 1/2 lengths to Cyber Secret in Aqueduct's Comely (gr. III).

Her next start was the one-mile Acorn at Belmont Park on June 6, the day before the Belmont Stakes. She had trained well for that start, and even worked three furlongs in :36 4/5 three days before the race.

But in the Acorn, she ran sixth ahead of one other horse and suffered her first defeat at Belmont Park. McGaughey did not even nominate her to Saturday's nine-furlong Mother Goose (gr. I), which was easily won by Spoken Fur.

"They said it would take about 30 days of walking and 30 days of turn out, then we will re-evaluate," McGaughey said. "We're hoping to have her ready for late fall or for next year."