A week out from the Jim Dandy,
trainer Steve Asmussen has yet to decide whether he’ll run Dominus,
victorious in the Grade 2 Dwyer at Belmont Park on July 2, or Astrology,
winner of the Grade 3 Iroquois as a 2-year-old and third in this year’s Grade 1
Preakness, in the 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-olds.
Asmussen said he will likely send
one to the Jim Dandy and the other to the following day’s Grade 1 Haskell
Invitational at Monmouth Park and will base his decision based off wherever he
thinks “is the best fit and will benefit both of them the most.”
Both sophomores are owned by
Stonestreet Stables and George Bolton, with Spendthrift Farm also owning a
piece of Dominus.
“They are both quality 3-year-olds
with common ownership interests,” added Asmussen, who didn’t provide a
timetable on when he’d make a decision. “We want to maximize both horses.”
Meanwhile, Asmussen’s 3-year-old
sprinters, Justin Phillip and Wine Police, are on target for the
Grade 2, 6 ½-furlong Amsterdam on August 1.
Zayat Stables’ Justin Phillip was
off the board in the Grade 3 Lecomte and Grade 2 Risen Star around two turns at
the Fair Grounds, but has turned the corner since his connections decided to
focus on one-turn events, finishing third in the Grade 3 Bay Shore and Grade 2
Jerome at Aqueduct and taking the Grade 2 Woody Stephens presented by
VisitNassauCounty.com by 3 ¼ lengths on June 11.
“We tried to stretch him for the
money, basically, and backed him up for success,” said Asmussen.
J. Kirk and Judy Robison’s Wine
Police, shelved after taking his debut by 7 ¾ lengths and finishing third in
the Grade 1 Three Chimneys Hopeful last year at Saratoga, has raced once this
year, winning a Churchill Downs entry-level allowance by 2 ¼ lengths on June
“He’s had three solid races, he
likes Saratoga, so we have that going for him,” said Asmussen. “He’s done well
since his race at Churchill. There are a lot of reasons why he should run