Chad B. Harmon

In Return to Track, Nyquist Jogs at Pimlico

Derby winner Nyquist scheduled to return to Santa Anita Park June 5.

Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) winner Nyquist , who suffered his first career loss in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I), returned to the track June 2 for the first time since his third-place finish in the May 21 Preakness at Pimlico Race Course.

Accompanied on the pony by California-based trainer Doug O'Neill's assistant, Jack Sisterson, Nyquist jogged one lap around the main track at Pimlico.

The champion 2-year-old male of 2015 had been limited to walking the shedrow since exiting the Baltimore classic with a fever and elevated white blood cell count that forced his connections to cancel plans for a rematch with Preakness winner Exaggerator  in the June 11 Belmont Stakes (gr. I).

"He went great this morning. We just jogged him once, backtracked him around and he was full of energy; everything we wanted to see first day back after his slight issue there but he's doing great," Sisterson said. "We're very happy and optimistic moving forward with Nyquist."

Sisterson said Nyquist will train at 8:30 a.m. June 3 and is scheduled to leave the morning of June 5 to rejoin O'Neill and owner J. Paul Reddam in California. No plans have been made where Nyquist may run next.

"He's going to ship out and fly back to California around 9 or 10 Sunday morning. Doug and Paul are excited to get him back at Santa Anita Park," Sisterson said. "We have four runners that are going to run on Belmont day and we leave Sunday also. We're excited."

Nyquist won each of his first eight starts including five grade I races on five different racetracks before his third-place finish as the Preakness favorite. Exaggerator won by 3 1/2 lengths and Nyquist was nosed for third by late-running Cherry Wine.