04/12/2007 11:00PM

Ambitious plans for Take D' Tour


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Trainer David Fawkes said he couldn't be happier with Take D' Tour's second-place finish behind Ermine in the Grade 1 Apple Blossom Handicap at Oaklawn. Among those in her wake in that April 7 race was the reigning Breeders' Cup Distaff winner Round Pond.

"I thought she ran super," Fawkes said. "Especially considering it was her first start in 10 weeks."

The Apple Blossom marked Take D' Tour's first appearance since her second-place finish behind Joint Effort in the Sunshine Millions Distaff at Santa Anita on Jan. 27. Last year, Take D' Tour won 6 of 10 starts, including the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps.

Fawkes said he gave her more than two months between starts because he didn't want a repeat of her sixth-place finish in last year's Beldame Stakes, which came less than a month after she finished second in the Ruffian.

"She bounced last year when I brought her back too quick in the Beldame, so I wanted to give her a little time to freshen up after making the trip to California," Fawkes said. "We have several options for her, although we'll probably look to take her back to New York, where she had so much success last season, and run her back in the Shuvee and/or the Phipps again."

Take D' Tour won the Grade 2 Shuvee and the Phipps by 5 1/2 lengths each.

With the Breeders' Cup at Monmouth Park this year, Fawkes said he is thinking of running her in the Molly Pitcher there over the summer.

Fawkes also reported that he'll send his talented but unlucky filly Flying Circle to Churchill Downs for the $100,000 Mamzelle Sprint Stakes on May 3. Flying Circle, a stakes winner earlier in her career over the Churchill turf course, has finished a troubled second in each of her last two starts here this winter.

Electrify to run next at Calder

Electrify, who launched his 2007 campaign with a fourth-place finish on the grass in a Tampa Bay Downs allowance, worked a mile in 1:44 over the main track at his Calder base Friday. Electrify, a three-time stakes winner, finished fifth in the Grade 1 Haskell last year at 3. He could make his next start either in Calder's six-furlong Ponche Handicap or Grade 3 Miami Breeders' Cup Handicap on the turf April 28.

Image of Mom favored in feature

As a trainer, Happy Alter campaigned numerous stakes winners, including the multiple Grade 1 winner Jolie's Halo. Alter has given up the training end of the business. He has turned over those duties to Ron Spatz, but continues to campaign many of his homebreds, including Image of Mom, who will go postward among the favorites in Sunday's $46,000 allowance headliner carded at five furlongs on the turf.

Image of Mom is the product of a mating between a pair of former Alter-trained runners, Halo's Image and Withmom'sapproval. A 3-year-old filly, Image of Mom lost all chance when she broke poorly debuting over the main track here Feb. 25, but five weeks later she switched to turf and went wire to wire to win a maiden race by 2 1/4 lengths, earning an 82 Beyer Speed Figure.

Image of Mom looks like the one to catch again in a full field of 12 3-year-old fillies entered for Sunday's main event. Her chief competition, both early and late, could come from Miss Willow, who set a fast and contested pace before finishing a game second in her grass debut here March 25.

A speed duel between Image of Mom and Miss Willow would enhance the chances of Irish Gypsy Rose, who rallied to win a mid-priced conditioned claiming dash over the main track April 4.

Among the question marks in the field are Come Together and Rolling True, who both make their grass debuts, and Acquired Cat, who is a proven commodity over the turf but will be making her first start since Nov. 8.