Katsumi Yoshizawa's homebred Master Fencer, trained by Koichi Tsunoda, was in good order on Thursday morning at his Belmont barn, where he continues to prepare for the Grade 1, $1.5 million Belmont Stakes presented by NYRA Bets.
The Japanese-bred son of Just a Way stumbled slightly during his five-furlong breeze on Wednesday morning under training assistant Yosuke Kono. As a precaution, an X-ray was taken of Master Fencer's front ankles, which did not show any issues.
Kono, via translator Mitsuoki Numamoto, said that Master Fencer was sound and in good order.
“He got a little inflammation because of the breezing, which is normal,” said Kono. “The X-rays came back totally fine. The vet is not concerned about anything.”
Kono said that Master Fencer followed his regular schedule on Thursday morning, which included an opportunity to stretch his legs on the walking path in the back paddock of their barn.
“Today, he walked for an hour, which is normal for us the day after a breeze,” said Kono. “Tomorrow, we will go to the paddock for paddock schooling first and then to the main track for a light jog.”
Master Fencer rallied from last of 19 to finish seventh in the Grade 1 Kentucky Derby and was elevated to sixth following the disqualification of Maximum Security, who had crossed the wire in first.
Julien Leparoux, aboard for the Derby effort, will retain the mount on Master Fencer for the third leg of the Triple Crown.
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