As trainer Bob Baffert indicated might be the case, Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit will not run in the July 17 Haskell Stakes (G1) at Monmouth Park.
John Heims, racing secretary for the New Jersey track, confirmed an Asbury Park Press report about the decision, saying that Baffert "said the race came back to quick for him."
Medina Spirit, whose Kentucky Derby win is in jeopardy after he tested positive after the race, last started in the Preakness, where he finished third. He has worked once since, going three furlongs in 37.6 seconds at Santa Anita on June 14.
The rest of the field is firming up for the $1 million race, Heims said. Mandaloun, second in the Kentucky Derby and winner of the Pegasus Stakes, a Haskell prep, is confirmed, Heims said. Midnight Bourbon, Hot Rod Charlie and Following Sea also are confirmed.
Heims said he expects to hear from Michael McCarthy on Wednesday about a decision on Preakness Stakes winner Rombauer. Owner-breeder John Fradkin told Horse Racing Nation last week that he was "50-50" for the race.
Weyburn also is a possibility, Heims said, though he might be headed to the Jim Dandy (G2) at Saratoga after his second-place finish to Mandaloun in the Pegasus Stakes.
"Some locals are interested in the race," Heims said. One is Anti Gravity, winner of his last two at Monmouth for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer. Also in consideration are Pickin' Time, a New Jersey-bred colt trained by Kelly Breen, and Basso, trained by Greg Sacco.