Other likely Jerome starters, according to the New York Racing Association, are Dwyer Stakes (gr. II) winner Albert the Great; Withers Stakes (gr. III) winner Big E E, who won a seven-furlong allowance race at Belmont by 5 1/2 lengths in his most recent start; and Hook and Ladder. Hook and Ladder, a John Kimmel trainee, has won two of three career starts, including a seven-length romp in a six-furlong Saratoga allowance race earlier this month. The son of Dixieland Band has yet to race beyond 6 1/2 furlongs.
Depending upon the weather and the colt's condition following a workout Sunday, Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Fusaichi Pegasus could return to competition Saturday in the Jerome Handicap (gr. I), a one-mile race for 3-year-olds."I thought he worked very well," Drysdale said of the breeze in which the colt went seven furlongs in 1:28.27 under exercise rider Andy Durnin. Fusaichi Pegasus in company with stablemate Bodyguard (1:29.34), a 5-year-old gelding who won the 1998 Itsallgreektome Stakes at Hollywood Park. "He looked happy and was just cruising along."Fusaichi Pegasus has not started since finishing second in the Preakness. Also being pointed toward the Jerome is Louisiana Derby (gr. II) winner Mighty, who worked six furlongs in 1:13.47, breezing.