Trainer Jason Servis said today that multiple Grade 1 winner Maximum Security will skip the Travers Stakes on Aug. 24 at Saratoga to point to the Pennsylvania Derby on Sept. 21 because the Haskell Invitational and Florida Derby winner “still is not 100 percent.”
“I don't like where he's at. He's not eating the way I want him to eat and he's not carrying the weight I'd like to see him carry,” Servis said late Thursday afternoon in making the announcement. “I just want to make sure he's 100 percent for his next race and he's not there right now.
“The best thing is to wait until he is 100 percent and point to the Pennsylvania Derby.”
Maximum Security, the first horse disqualified from first place in the Kentucky Derby, has been stabled at Monmouth Park since returning from Louisville in early May.
The absence of the Gary and Mary West-owned colt from the Grade 1 Travers follows on the heels of the announcement that Game Winner, also owned by the Wests, would pass the Travers as well due to a health issue. The $1 million Pennsylvania Derby is also a Grade 1 race.
“With Game Winner out, if Maximum Security was 100 percent I'd go to the Travers,” Servis said. “But he's just not back to where he was. I'll probably give him a week off and that still gives me more than four weeks until the Pennsylvania Derby.
“I'm fortunate to have patient owners in the Wests who will allow me to take a step back if I don't feel the horse is 100 percent. It's easy to run. But if I ran him when he wasn't 100 percent, you come out of the race saying to yourself `What was I thinking?' ”
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