06/25/2009 12:00AM

97 Beyer points out Auction Watch at Colonial


Auction Watch will look to back up a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of 97 earned in a May 23 optional claimer at Philadelphia Park when he takes on 13 older males in Saturday's $50,000 Da Hoss Stakes over a mile of turf at Colonial Downs.

Auction Watch was tried unsuccessfully in a pair of hurdle races last year before winning the Alphabet Soup Handicap for Pennsylvania-breds over 1 1/16 miles of turf last June at Philadelphia Park. A 6-year-old Augustin Stable homebred, he wrapped up his 2008 campaign with a fifth-place finish over the Tapeta surface at Presque Isle Downs. The May 23 victory is his only start this year, and the 97 Beyer is the best last-race figure in the Da Hoss.

Sheldon Russell will ride Auction Watch for trainer Sanna Hendriks.

Perhaps the main opponent for Auction Watch is Brickell, who has 2 wins and 2 seconds in 4 starts on the Colonial turf.

Two starts back, Brickell won the $75,000 Henry Clark, a one-mile race over good turf on April 25 at Pimlico. Brickell defeated four horses that have been entered in the Da Hoss - Mint Slewlep, Baltimore Bob, Yankee Master, and Midwatch.

Mint Slewlep, who finished 10th in the Henry Clark, is winless in five starts since a victory in last year's Da Hoss.

Baltimore Bob, sixth in the Henry Clark, is exiting an eighth-place finish in the Grade 2 Dixie Stakes at Pimlico on the May 16 Preakness undercard.

Jungle Fighter, owned by Stronach Stables, is a perfect 2 for 2 on the Colonial turf, having won a pair of stakes there in 2007.

The Da Hoss will mark Hesa Big Star's first attempt at a mile on turf. The 7-year-old gelding hasn't raced beyond 5 1/2 furlongs since September 2006. Trainer Margaret Wolfendale will remove Hesa Big Star's blinkers.