Imperial Commander is back on the recovery road
GOLD Cup hero Imperial Commander yesterday took a significant step on the road to making a racing comeback, writes Jonathan Herbert.
He was brought in from a field to begin road work at Kevin and Eyssen Ross' Mount Top Stud just outside Belfast.
The exercise is aimed at building up his fitness before he goes back into training with Nigel Twiston-Davies at his stable in Guiting Power.
Imperial Commander has been recuperating at Mount Top Stud, where he has spent summers throughout his career, since sustaining a season-ending tendon injury in September.
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Ian Robinson, spokesman for owners Our Friends In The North, said the 2010 Gold Cup winner's chances of racing again looked bright.
"He looks fantastic and scans on the leg have come back clear twice," he said. "He's had a good long break and fingers crossed everything will go to plan.
"We'll take it step by step and get a lot of road work into him so the tendon is nice and strong.
"There's no reason why he won't race again because the leg has come back fine and everyone looking after him has done a fantastic job."
He said plans for Imperial Commander will become clearer after Richard Bevis, his regular work rider, puts him through his paces at Twiston-Davies' stable.
If Twiston-Davies and Bevis are happy with the 11-year-old, his first big target will be the Betfair Chase at Haydock on November 24, which he won in 2010.
â Jockey Popham nearing return after injury, p31