Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) champion Sky Jack, who was one of the pacesetters in the $1-million Pacific Classic, is heading for surgery to remove a chip from his right knee. The surgery will put the big gray Jaklin Klugman gelding on the shelf for several months. Trainer Doug O'Neill is hopeful that the Ren-Mar Thoroughbreds homebred can be back in time to defend his Gold Cup championship next year.Sky Jack had been pointing to the Cal Cup Classic at Oak Tree. He finished out of the money in the Pacific Classic after dueling briskly with Bosque Redondo for the lead into the stretch.
Sky Jack has missed long stretches before. After the second race of his career in July of 1999, he was off for more than nine months. He was absent for 15 months after winning the Native Diver Handicap (gr. III) Dec. 3, 2000, until he returned Feb. 9.Overall, Sky Jack has eight victories in 15 career starts with earnings of $930,000.