Undefeated Grade 1 winner Nadal, who won a division of the Arkansas Derby (G1) for trainer Bob Baffert earlier this month, has sustained a likely career-ending injury that was diagnosed after a workout at Santa Anita Park on Thursday, in a story first reported by Bloodhorse.com.
The injury suffered was reported as a left front lateral condylar fracture, which immediately required surgery.
“He is now going to become a stallion,” co-owner George Bolton told Bloodhorse’s Bob Ehalt. “It’s very sad, obviously. I just got the call this morning. It’s a call you never want to get in horse racing.
He retires undefeated. He retires, thank God, on a soon-to-be recovery. He gave us four great races.”
One of the favourites for the rescheduled 2020 Kentucky Derby, the Bob Baffert-trained Nadal employed a front-running style and had a large frame, which made him an imposing figure on the track.
Baffert was reached for comment some time following the successful surgery. He described the events following Nadal’s workout.
“He breezed,” Baffert said. “He breezed a half (mile). Everything went well. He came back to the barn and you could tell he was a little bit off. We x-rayed him.”
The surgery was performed at Santa Anita’s onsite equine hospital.