08/14/2001 12:00AM

Adirondack duel stirs crowd


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - They're still talking about the remarkable stretch run of Monday's $150,000 Adirondack Stakes and the courage displayed by the dueling principals, the victorious You and the gallant runner-up, the 3-5 Cashier's Dream.

The 86th running of the Adirondack was so compelling that it will forever be a point of reference and will be described as one of the finest 2-year-old races ever run at old Saratoga.

You won by a neck after the fillies completed the 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:15.16. The Adirondack distance was lengthened from six to 6 1/2 furlongs in 1994. In the intervening seven years, the fastest time was the 1:16.60 run by Flat Fleet Feet in 1995.

The big, rugged You and the petite Cashier's Dream took on the roles of protagonists early in the Adirondack. With the undefeated Cashier's Dream in front by a 1 1/2 lengths after a quarter in 21.65 seconds, You moved into second and began to narrow the gap. They were only a half-length apart after a half-mile in 44.62, and they were head and head with three-sixteenths remaining as they straightened into the stretch.

Cashier's Dream had the rail and You was alongside as they battled through the final furlong. They gave it everything they had and then dug deep for a little more. It was only with yards remaining that jockey Edgar Prado got You ahead by an inch while Donnie Meche kept Cashier's Dream coming on. The stands reverberated with thunderous ovations, for Saratoga's fans are knowledgeable and realized they had been witness to a special moment.

"Both fillies were huge," You's trainer, Bobby Frankel, observed the next day.

"Cashier's Dream beat us in the slop at Churchill Downs in June, but we went ahead and bought You from the breeder. When Cashier's Dream came back, a few weeks later, and set a track record in winning the Debutante, I knew I bought a good horse for Edmond Gann. This was the first time I got to run her, and she was terrific. But it was a hard race, and I don't think she'll run again until we get to Belmont Park. One race is probably all she'll have before the Breeders Cup."

Cashier's Dream was also a recent purchase, a couple of weeks before she won the Debutante for Team Valor and the Heiligbrodt Racing Stable.

"We're very proud of our filly," trainer Steve Asmussen said. "She was still fighting back at the finish in as good a race as you'd want to see. It's no accident that you have those great races at Saratoga. We'll want to see how she comes out of it before making any plans, but there is a chance she can run in the Spinaway on Aug. 31. The Spinaway could tell us whether she can stay sufficiently to be considered for the Breeders Cup."