Amerman Racing’s Oscar Performance (Kitten’s Joy), who was pulled up near the wire and vanned off in Saturday’s GI Arlington Million, was sent to Dr. Larry Bramlage at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital, trainer Brian Lynch said from Saratoga Springs Sunday morning. While Lynch said nothing seemed obviously wrong after an initial inspection, the six-time graded stakes winner was sent to Rood and Riddle as a precaution.
“He seems okay. To us, it wasn’t anything real apparent after the race, but Jose said he definitely took a bad step,” Lynch said. “He did the right thing and eased him up. When he got back to the barn, you couldn’t see anything on him, so just to be on the ultra-conservative side, we’re having [Rood and Riddle] do an evaluation and make sure there’s nothing that we’re missing.”
Winner of the GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at two, Oscar Performance captured both the GI Belmont Derby Invitational and GI Secretariat S. The 4-year-old is slated to stand at Mill Ridge Farm at the conclusion of his racing career.
“Hopefully, it’s not an early retirement and it was just one of those things,” Lynch said. “There was nothing pronounced, we’re just keeping our fingers crossed that everything’s okay.”
Lynch added that his other stable star, Heart to Heart (English Channel), who finished last of six in the GI Fourstardave H. on Saturday at Saratoga, emerged from the race fine and likely threw in a poor performance due to the rain-softened turf course condition.
“He’s a funny old horse,” Lynch said. “On days he decides he doesn’t want to play, he just looks after himself. He’s done that to us before.”