Rather than make a last-ditch effort to get Siena Farm's Dewey Square into the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), trainer Dale Romans said it is likely the homebred Bernardini colt will be pointed toward the $750,000 Illinois Derby (gr. III) at Hawthorne Racecourse.
Initially, Romans was considering the April 13 Toyota Blue Grass Stakes or Arkansas Derby, both grade I, for the colt who most recently finished fifth in the Palm Beach Stakes. At Keeneland on April 6, Dewey Square worked five furlongs in 1:03 and galloped out past the wire in 1:16 under Tammy Fox.
Dewey Square has only two points in the points system for the Kentucky Derby and would have needed to run well in either the Blue Grass or Arkansas Derby in order to get in the May 4 classic.
"We're regrouping," Romans said April 8 while attending the Keeneland April 2-year-olds in training sale.
The 2012 Eclipse Award-winning trainer, Romans hopes to duplicate his first classic victory with Shackleford in the 2011 Preakness Stakes (gr. I) by pointing Dewey Square to that May 18 race at Pimlico Race Course if he performs well in the Illinois Derby.
In addition to Shackleford's Preakness, Romans had recent solid performances in Triple Crown races with Derby third-place finisher Dullahan, Paddy O'Prado , who was also third in the Derby, and First Dude , who was second in the Preakness and third in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
Romans said two of his stable stars, Dullahan and Little Mike, are recovering from their recent excursions to Dubai where each ran 11th in the grade I Dubai World Cup and Dubai Duty Free, respectively.
"They had some little excuses, but both horses are fine," Romans said.
Both horses are receiving much needed breaks and are at WinStar Farm for about 10 days before they will be returned to the track to resume training, Romans said.