08/18/2004 11:00PM

'Angel' ships back for Fisher

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The better horses from Kentucky are regularly shipped to Saratoga to be tested in prestigious stakes. Only the rare exception makes the trip to Ellis Park after running well in New York. That is the move Angel Trumpet makes Saturday when she heads the $100,000 Anna M. Fisher Debutante at Ellis Park, one race after finishing second in the Grade 2 Schuylerville.

Trainer Bernie Flint said the decision to run at Ellis Park was motivated by Angel Trumpet being based at Churchill Downs. If he had shipped her back to run at Saratoga for the next race in the series, Friday's Spinaway, the seven-furlong distance would have been the same as the Anna M. Fisher, and "that's a long way to go," he said.

Angel Trumpet, whose only prior race was a debut score at Churchill Downs June 24, came close to victory at Saratoga, setting a quick pace and leading by 3 1/2 lengths with a furlong remaining. A slow final eighth of a mile in more than 14 seconds proved her undoing, however, and Classic Elegance caught her in the closing strides and beat her by a length.

Angel Trumpet "never saw the winner," Flint said. "She came 12 wide."

Although the Anna M. Fisher is a longer race, Flint said he is not concerned about the distance. He noted that she ran well stretching out from a 4 1/2-furlong maiden race to the six-furlong Schuylerville, and he considers the six-furlong to seven-furlong stretch out less significant.

A 2-year-old Cape Canaveral filly owned and bred by Dreabon Copeland, Angel Trumpet will be ridden by Willie Martinez, who was aboard for her maiden win.

As the lone graded-stakes-placed runner in the field, she is class of the race. She stands out less on speed figures. Her two races have earned her Beyer Speed Figures of 77 and 76 - the best figures of any entrant in the Anna M. Fisher field, but by a relatively small margin. Sacred Feather, Radiant Avie, and Quiet Optimism all earned Beyers in the low to mid 70's in winning their maidens.

Those fillies prefer to race on the lead, as does Angel Trumpet, suggesting a quick pace could develop. Such a scenario would benefit Kota, who rallied to finish second in the Silver Maiden Stakes at Arlington July 31.

A winner of 1 of 3 starts, Kota worked a bullet half-mile in 48.80 seconds at Churchill Downs on Aug. 15 for trainer Bob Holthus. John McKee rides.