Injured Preakness contender Royal Mo underwent successful surgery Monday on his fractured right front ankle and is recuperating at the New Bolton Center in Pennsylvania, trainer John Shirreffs said.
Dr. Dean Richardson, the same surgeon who treated Barbaro after he broke down in the 2006 Preakness, fused the joint in Royal Mo’s damaged ankle.
“Dr. Richardson called me this morning and said he looks good,” Shirreffs said. “The one thing about Royal Mo is that he’s extremely easy to work with. He makes a good patient.”
He said Royal Mo will likely be monitored at New Bolton for at least a week and if no infections or other difficulties arise, the colt will move to a rehabilitation facility, possibly at WinStar Farm in Kentucky.
Jockey Gary Stevens pulled up Royal Mo during a workout at Pimlico on Sunday morning and helped support the colt’s leg while he waited for Shirreffs and track veterinarian Dan Dreyfuss to arrive. Royal Mo was diagnosed with a career-ending fracture to his sesamoid bone and was quickly transported to New Bolton for further treatment.
Shirreffs praised Pimlico staffers and Stevens for their professionalism throughout the emergency.
“Since the injury, everything has gone great,” he said. “It could have been much worse.”
Shirreffs had hoped to run Royal Mo in the Kentucky Derby, but the horse did not earn enough points to get into the 20-horse field.