The Jerome Stakes (gr. II), which has been run in April for the past two years, will be run on Jan. 5, it was reported in the Daily Racing Form. The Jerome will replace the listed Count Fleet Stakes, which will not be run in 2013.
Moving the Jerome to January makes it a nice lead-in to the rest of Aqueduct's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) preps. The Jerome, at 1 mile and 70 yards, will be followed by the Withers Stakes (gr. III) at 1 1/16 miles on Feb. 2, the Gotham Stakes (gr. III) at 1 1/16 miles on March 2, and the Wood Memorial (gr. I) at 1 1/8 miles on April 6.
Regarding the move, Andrew Byrnes, NYRA's stakes coordinator, told the DRF, “Having a graded race there could make a difference. It's nice to have a good 3-year-old program in place from January on.”
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