Photo: Mary Cage
The New York Racing Association will on Saturday finalize its list of horses invited to the July 7 Belmont Derby, a Grade 1, $1.2 million race on turf. Nominations also close this weekend for the Grade 3, $300,000 Dwyer on dirt.
“He hasn’t made his decision yet,” NYRA stakes coordinator Andrew Byrnes said of Mendelssohn trainer Aidan O’Brien. “I think he’s going to be here for one of the two races, yes.”
The Belmont Derby would offer Mendelssohn a shot at more immediate prestige, as he also won a Grade 1 on grass traveling from his Ireland base to the U.S. in the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf. But the Dwyer would mark his second dirt start after an unsuccessful try at the Kentucky Derby.
Connections have stated a goal to campaign the $3 million Coolmore colt up to the Breeders’ Cup Classic.