Photo Credit: NYRA
In just seven starts, Haikal has proven himself a reliable sort for Shadwell, but luck has not always been as reliable in return. A good-looking winner of the Gotham (G3) and Jimmy Winkfield Stakes at Aqueduct in early 2019, a hoof abscess then prevented the son of Daaher from competing in the Kentucky Derby (G1) four weeks after finishing a closing third in the Wood Memorial (G2).
The descendant of Shadwell’s champion Shadayid has raced just twice since—an unlucky runner-up effort in Gulfstream allowance company in January and fifth in the Gulfstream Park Mile (G2) in February. Unfortunately, he again required time off after the latter, but on Monday, May 25, returned to training at Shadwell’s Camden, South Carolina, training base.
“He jogged one mile for his first day back in training,” said Kevin Kahkola, who trains Shadwell’s young and laid-up horses at said venue before they are sent to their racecourse conditioners. “He is sound and happy and seemed happy to be back on the track.”
Rick Nichols, vice president and general manager of Shadwell’s USA operations, added: “Haikal returned to South Carolina on May 14 and has resumed training. He came out of a work in mid-March with a small chip in his right knee and surgery was done on March 19. We are glad to get him back going. He is a really good horse. It will probably take Kevin about 60 days to get him ready to head back to the races.”
Nichols confirmed that, like most of now-retired trainer Kiaran McLaughlin’s former pupils, Haikal has been reallocated to seven-time champion conditioner Todd Pletcher.
Shadwell Racing Media