02/24/2010 1:00AM

Maximus Ruler off until summer


The promising 3-year-old colt Maximus Ruler will miss the Louisiana Derby, and won't race again until late spring or early summer, trainer Clark Hanna said Wednesday afternoon.

Maximus Ruler, who won his maiden in an allowance race at Churchill Downs last fall, had been pointed to last Saturday's Risen Star Stakes after finishing second in the Jan. 23 Lecomte Stakes, but was withdrawn from Risen Star consideration five days before the race with what Hanna believed was a bruised hoof.

Maximus Ruler went back to the racetrack to train on two subsequent days, but, unhappy with his colt's condition Sunday, Hanna himself drove Maximus Ruler from New Orleans to Kentucky on Monday so that a bone scan could be performed on the horse Tuesday.

"A couple things lit up on the bone scan," Hanna said. "There's nothing fractured, nothing chipped off. They just said that if you press on, you could make things worse."

Hanna said Maximus Ruler will be given 30 days off and then could resume light training if he appears to be sound. Hanna said he planned to van Maximus Ruler back to Fair Grounds on Thursday morning.

"Hopefully he'll be ready for a good summer campaign," said Hanna.