05/31/2006 11:00PM

Amorama and Humoristic benefit from scratch of foe


Early in the week, when entries were taken for Saturday's $100,000 John Rooney Memorial at Delaware Park, trainer Graham Motion was confident the quarter crack that prevented five-time graded-stakes winner Film Maker from racing on Memorial Day would be healed.

By Wednesday, however, Motion had reconsidered. Although the injury is minor and something he has dealt with before with the mare, Motion realized it would be better to give the 6-year-old Film Maker a bit more time before she makes her first start of 2006.

Motion's decision to scratch Film Maker means the favorite's role in the Rooney will now likely be inherited by the Bobby Frankel-trained Amorama or Maryland-based mare Humoristic, the only remaining graded-stakes winners in the field of nine fillies and mares going 1 1/8 miles on turf.

won the Grade 1 John C. Mabee at Del Mar last July and was narrowly beaten by Intercontinental in the Grade 2 Palomar later in the meet. She hasn't been the same horse in three starts this season, however, losing twice as the favorite at Tampa Bay and finishing fourth last time out in the Grade 2 Jenny Wiley at Keeneland.

On the rare occasions when Frankel ships a stakes horse into Delaware, they almost always run well. He won the 2003 Delaware Handicap with Wild Spirit and last year's Caesar Rodney with Ay Caramba. Of the four other stakes horses Frankel saddled at Delaware in 2005, Chattahoochee War finished second in the Grade 3 Kent and two others, High Limit and Personal Legend, picked up thirds, in the Grade 3 Leonard Richards and Grade 2 Del Cap.

won the Grade 3 Violet at The Meadowlands last fall and just missed despite a wide trip last time out in the Grade 3 Gallorette Handicap at Pimlico.

The question with Humoristic is whether she can run another big race on short rest. While her races are routinely spaced three to four weeks apart, Humoristic is now being asked to return on just two weeks' rest.

Those who like Amorama might be tempted to seek better value with the Michael Matz-trained Marchonin.

Two starts ago, finished a neck behind Amorama in the Grade 3 Hillsborough at 24-1. She improved her Beyer Speed Figure from an 84 in that race to an 89 last time out when she was sixth but beaten only 2 1/4 lengths in the Grade 3 Distaff Turf Mile on the Kentucky Derby undercard.

Pimlico: Christmas Stocking returns

Christmas Stocking, a stakes winner on turf in Florida, and Somethinaboutbetty, a two-time stakes winner on dirt, square off in the $75,000 Pearl Necklace at Pimlico.

The 1 1/16-mile turf race for 3-year-old Maryland-bred fillies drew a field of 10.

most impressive performance came when she rallied from sixth to capture the $100,000 Cherokee Frolic at Calder in early December. She has been freshened since finishing third, beaten a head, in another turf stakes, the Bedanken, at Louisiana Downs in mid-January.

will be making her turf debut after winning 3 of her last 4 starts, including the Maryland Juvenile Fillies Championship at Laurel and the Country Life Farm over a sloppy track at Pimlico in the first start of her form cycle on April 22.

Based in New York with trainer Todd Pletcher, Somethinaboutbetty shows a high Tomlinson rating of 321 for turf, so she's likely to adapt well to the surface switch.

Two others who appear capable of winning are , beaten less than four lengths despite a troubled trip over a yielding course in the Hilltop three weeks ago, and Graceful Ace, who easily defeated 10 rivals in her turf debut against maidens at Atlantic City.

Charles Town: Lake after 5th straight

Trainer Scott Lake will try to take his fifth straight stakes at Charles Town when he runs the razor-sharp Remarqable Tale in the $50,000 Turn Capp at seven furlongs. Lake has won all four stakes run at the Charles Town meet.

A 5-year-old mare claimed for $15,000 out of a nonwinners-of-two race at Aqueduct in March, Remarqable Tale has since reeled off three consecutive wins, including back-to-back scores at Charles Town by a combined 11 3/4 lengths.

The horse to beat, however, may be the 7-year-old Miss Hamma. a two-time stakes winner at Charles Town last season.