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Asmussen Likes Belmont Stakes Distance For Red Route One
Red Route One (Maryland Jockey Club)

Asmussen Likes Belmont Stakes Distance For Red Route One

Trainer Steve Asmussen saw enough in Red Route One’s Preakness Stakes (G1) fourth-place finish that after the race he said the Belmont Stakes (G1) is the obvious target.

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Jockey Joel Rosario was forced to have Red Route One closer to the lead than is his want, given how John Velazquez was able to back down the pace to a crawl up the backstretch.

“This race fell apart for a lot of reasons that nobody will be able to put their finger on,” the Hall of Fame trainer said. “I don’t expect that to be the way things are going forward. We just regroup and get better at it.

“You’re not guaranteed to get pace in the Belmont. You win races because of pace, and you benefit from it periodically. And then other times you don’t. This would have been the latter for him,” he added. “He is nearing $700,000 in earnings. He’s kept very good company his whole career and was probably beaten [4 ¾] lengths in the Preakness in a race I don’t think set up ideally for him. Does he beat them under different circumstances? Who knows? But I do like the opportunity to run him a mile and a half.”

Red Route One earned a free roll in the Preakness by virtue of winning Oaklawn Park’s Bath House Row Stakes.

He has earned $732,525 off of a 2-2-1 record in 10 starts.