Reed Palmer Photgraphy/Churchill Downs

Asmussen: Jerome Handicap Next for Astrology

A.P. Indy colt finished second in Sunland Derby in previous 2011 start.

Saying that to run Astrology  in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) off one prep race “would be asking too much of him at this point,” trainer Steve Asmussen said the colt would make his next start in the Jerome Handicap (gr. II) on April 23.

Astrology, co-owned by Stonestreet Stables and George Bolton, will be making his second start of the year in Aqueduct’s Jerome. He was a strong second in the Sunland Derby (gr. III) in his previous 2011 outing.

According to a statement from Stonestreet, the Jerome decision was made after a relaxed and patient four furlong work in :50 2/5 over the Churchill Downs oval on Monday, April 18.

“We think the Jerome is a nice spot for him coming off the Sunland Derby, a race in which he ran hard. We feel that running him in the Kentucky Derby off one prep race is too much to ask of him at this point,” Asmussen said in the statement.

The son of A.P. Indy out of the Quiet American mare Quiet Eclipse was bred by Stonestreet and captured his first graded stakes win in the Iroquois Stakes (gr. III) at Churchill Downs and closed out his 2-year-old campaign with a second-place finish in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II).

“We still feel that he will be a major 3-year-old this year,” Asmussen said.