Successful Appeal, last year's leading freshman stallion and sire of Kentucky Derby (gr. I) contender Closing Argument, is recuperating from colic surgery performed April 25 at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital near Lexington. Reports indicate the 9-year-old son of Valid Appeal is recovering nicely. Successful Appeal, who stands at Walmac Farm near Lexington, covered 83 of the 113 mares booked to him."The small intestine was trapped over the nephrosplenic ligament, which is rare," attending surgeon Dr. Rolf Embertson said. "The bowel was slightly thickened, but did not need resection, and we simply put everything back where it was supposed to be. He is doing well, is comfortable, and should be able to resume breeding in about four weeks if the incision is healing well."Walmac managing director John T.L. Jones III said resident veterinarian J.D. Howard and stallion manager Ron Gilbert will closely monitor the stallion's recovery.Successful Appeal, who was produced from the Fortunate Prospect mare Successful Dancer, sired the earners of $1.7 million last year. Closing Argument, one of his sire's six stakes winners, won this year's Holy Bull Stakes (gr. III) and ran third in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) in his last start.Successful Appeal stood at Hartley/De Renzo, Walmac South near Ocala, Fla., before being relocated to Walmac Farm for the 2005 season. His fee is $25,000.