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Breeders Cup 2015

Jackson Bend Continues to Mend

Jackson Bend (no. 2), ridden by Corey Nakatani and trained by Nick Zito, wins the James Marvin Stakes for three year olds and upward on July 22, 2011 at Saratoga Race Track in Saratoga Springs, New York. (Bob Mayberger/Eclipse Sportswire)

Multiple Grade 1 winner Jackson Bend continues to mend following his eventful Saturday morning on the Oklahoma training track.


“He’s doing good. I was playing with him a little while ago,” said Hall of Fame trainer Nick Zito. “He was trying to bite people all morning. He had a lot of well-wishers this morning. Rosie Napravnik came over to visit him, and he was trying to bite her. He’s a funny horse.”


Owned by Robert LaPenta and Fred Brei, Jackson Bend was involved in a collision with another horse, the 7-year-old Little Nick, on Saturday. Neither horse sustained any injuries in the incident, but Jackson Bend was shaken up.


“I hope everything works out good,” Zito said. “I walked him today. I’ll probably take him for a trail ride tomorrow, and then we’ll see if toward the end of the week we can get him back to the track. He had a little swelling on his left side; that’s where he fell. Other than that, he is fine and feeling real good.”


The 5-year-old son of Hear No Evil has been pointed toward a title defense of the Grade 1, $500,000 Forego on September 1, but those plans are now in question.


“It would be an amazing story, a miracle, if he could make the Forego,” Zito said. “We just have to take it one day at a time. We never say never.”


His usual contemplative self, Zito marveled at the circumstances surrounding yesterday’s events: A horse named Little Nick collides with his stable star; Little Nick is a half-brother to Little Mike, winner of Saturday’s Grade 1 Arlington Million; and in Saturday’s fifth race at Saratoga , Zito runs second to a horse trained by Anthony Quartarolo, who trains Little Nick.


“It just shows you that racing is so complicated,” Zito said. “That’s a good quote: Racing is so complicated, and it’s so intertwined. Like they say, it’s not an exact science and no one has any lock on it. No one can say, ‘This is this or this is that or this is this or this is that.’ You can’t say that.”



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