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Apr 15, 2011

Uncle Mo has infection but will continue training



Ozone Park, NY (Sports Network) - Eclipse Award winner Uncle Mo has been determined to have an infection, but should not lose any training while being treated.

In a statement released Thursday, trainer Todd Pletcher and owner Mike Repole revealed the results of the colt's veterinary examination.

"Although it is not my standard practice to share a horse's examination results with anyone other than the owner," Pletcher stated, "I feel that Uncle Mo's disappointing performance in the Wood Memorial warrants an explanation.

"After his three extremely impressive starts as a two-year-old and his dominant performance in the Timely Writer Stakes in March, the Wood Memorial was an uncharacteristically poor effort. On Tuesday, we did a number of tests and pulled some blood work. Late yesterday, both Mike and I spoke with the vets, who concluded that Uncle Mo has a GI (gastrointestinal) tract infection, and we began treatment immediately. The vets also concluded that Uncle Mo is perfectly capable of returning to full training while the treatment continues. He will ship to Churchill Downs on April 18th and will have two works before May 7th. If I do not feel that Uncle Mo is 100 percent for the Kentucky Derby, both Mike and I agree that he will not run. My main focus is to return Uncle Mo to optimum health in the next 23 days, and I am optimistic that we can accomplish this goal.

In last Saturday's Wood Memorial at Aqueduct Racecourse the three-year-old finished third as the 1-10 favorite in the 10 horse field after having the lead entering the stretch.

"I am relieved that the vets were able to find a reason why we got a disappointing performance from Uncle Mo in the Wood Memorial," Repole said. "I, like all racing fans hope that Uncle Mo will be 100 percent on May 7th and in the starting gate at Churchill Downs. Though it has been a lifelong dream to run and win the Kentucky Derby, if Uncle Mo is not 100 percent, we will skip the Derby and go right to the Preakness. I have the utmost confidence in Todd, his staff and Mo's team of veterinarians. We all appreciate everyone's concern and care for this wonderfully gifted champion."

Uncle Mo was undefeated in four career starts going into the Wood Memorial. As a two-year-old he won the Champagne Stakes and Breeders' Cup Juvenile.

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