Kentucky Derby winner Monarchos.

Kentucky Derby winner Monarchos.

Photo by AP Photo/ Mark Lennihan

Derby Winner Monarchos Sidelined Up to 60 days

Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Monarchos will be sidelined for up to 60 days after suffering a subchondral hairline fracture of the third carpal bone of the right knee.

Trainer John T. Ward said the fracture was detected Monday in x ray's after Monarchos was acting uncomfortable while being shod. "He had grabbed a quarter earlier in the week, but he came back from that and when he was acting uncomfortable with the shoeing, we decided to take x-rays as a precaution."

Monarchos' prognosis for a return to racing is excellent after 60 days of rest, and no surgery will be required to repair the knee. Monarchos will remain at Ward's barn at Belmont Park, where he is walking an hour per day.

"It's a really small fracture. You really have to use your imagination to find it. He's totally sound and could go to the races tomorrow if we would let him," Ward said.

More x-rays will be taken in two weeks, and no decision as to when Monarchos will return to the races has been decided.

Monarchos, who races for John and Debby Oxley, ran the second-fastest Derby ever in 1:59.97 -- behind the 1:59 2/5 set by Secretariat in 1973 -- to finish 4 3/4 lengths ahead of Invisible Ink and Congaree.

He finished sixth in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I), and third in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I), behind the winner, Point Given in both events.

Monarchos has a lifetime record of 4-1-2 from nine lifetime starts, including his win in the Florida Derby (gr. I), with earnings of $1,715,630.