08/29/2007 1:18PM



J Be K., a Zayat/Baffert first-time starter by Silver Deputy, set a new Saratoga track record of 1:03.13 for 5 1/2 furlongs winning his debut in Wednesday's second race.

It was the second time the mark has been lowered at the meet. On Aug. 16, the Ronny Werner-trained filly Secret Gypsy ran the distance in 1:03.26 winning her debut, breaking Mayakovsky's 2001 mark of 1:03.32. The distance is rarely used except for 2-year-old maiden races. Saratoga could probably hand a free track record to someone if it carded a sprint stakes for older horses at 5.5f.

J Be K. was Baffert's third juvenile winner here since pulling his top 2-year-olds out of Del Mar because of his dislike of the Polytrack surface, which he believes does not showcase fast 2-year-olds to best advantage. J Be K., purchased for $250k at a February 2-year-old-in-training sale, broke straight to lead from the outside post in a field of nine and rattled off fractions of 21.87 and 44.88 en route to a 7 1/2-length victory over third-time starters Mr. Shortcakes (Pletcher) and Saratoga Seven (Lukas.)

If those two ran close to their most recent efforts (Beyers of 73 and 69 respectively) then J Be K. probably ran a Beyer in the mid-90's, but we'll have to see how the day's three other dirt sprints in races 5, 7 and 9 come up before assessing just how quick the track is today.

J Be K. was kept pretty quiet, paying $9 as the tepid favorite in a field of nine where most of the other firsters were dead on the board and did very little running. The one who took a late shot in the mutuels was Zito trainee Fierce Wind, 6-1 with two minutes to post but 3.65-1 at the close of betting. He ran fourth, beaten 13 lengths.