Monarchos, who is not expected to return to competition this year.

Monarchos, who is not expected to return to competition this year.

Photo by AP Photo/ Mark Lennihan

Monarchos Out For the Year

John C. Oxley's Monarchos, winner of this year's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) who suffered a hairline fracture earlier this summer, will not race for the rest of the year.

Trainer John Ward Jr. announced earlier this month the classic-winning son of Maria's Mon would miss the Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga, his main summer objective, but now said since he will be unable to return to form for the Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) on World Thoroughbred Championship Day, he is done for the year.

"It wasn't so much a decision as it was a matter of practicality," Ward said Wednesday from Saratoga where Monarchos is stabled. "It won't be 60 days (since the fracture was discovered) until the first of September. To then get him ready for the Breeders' Cup Classic in less than 60 days would be unfair to the horse. If you don't make the Classic, there's not a whole lot to look forward to the rest of the year."

Ward said he anticipates a return to action next year, starting in South Florida.

"He looks great and when he gets a clean bill of health, he'll go back into light training," Ward said. "We'll look for something at Gulfstream, but the Florida schedule isn't out yet.

An X-ray taken July 2 detected the fracture after Monarchos appeared uncomfortable in his stall. "It's a really small fracture," Ward said earlier this month. "You really have to use your imagination to find it."

Monarchos, winner of the May 5 Derby in the second fastest time in history, also won the Florida Derby (gr. I) earlier this year. He finished sixth in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) and has not started since a third-place finish in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I).