Racehorse Paynter to Resume Training, Wins Vox Populi

It’s hoped that the colt, who battled a series of medical issues in 2012, will return to the track in 2013.

This year’s Belmont Stakes runner-up Paynter will ship Dec. 29 from Fair Hill Equine Therapy Center near Elkton, Md., to Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert’s California barn, owner Ahmed Zayat confirmed Dec. 26, the same day it was announced the colt had won the 2012 Secretariat Vox Populi Award.

Paynter, a 3-year-old son of Awesome Again, has been recovering in Maryland from surgery carried out Oct. 3 at the University of Pennsylvania’s New Bolton Center of Veterinary Medicine to remove an abscessed area of his colon. The abscess was discovered after Paynter developed an illness that landed him first in a New Jersey clinic, then at the Upstate Equine Medical Center in New York. During the illness, Paynter developed and recovered from a bout of laminitis, among other medical struggles.

According to Zayat, the colt will be on a direct flight from Newark Liberty International Airport to Los Angeles International Airport. Zayat said he and his family will greet Paynter upon his arrival.

Zayat and his son Justin kept fans informed about Paynter’s progress via their respective Twitter accounts, @jazz3162 and

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The Blood-Horse is the leading weekly publication devoted to international Thoroughbred racing and breeding. Since 1916, the staff of The Blood-Horse has served the Thoroughbred community with the highest standards of journalistic excellence to provide comprehensive and timely editorial coverage and analysis.

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