04/08/2013 11:49AM

Aqueduct: Track bias a concern for Flying Zealous


OZONE PARK, N.Y. – The competition doesn’t concern Peter Kazamias as much as the racetrack does when he brings Flying Zealous back to New York for Wednesday’s $62,000 allowance feature at Aqueduct.

Kazamias is the owner, trainer, and breeder of Flying Zealous, who used his speed to win a pair of New York-bred allowance races over the inner track, part of a five-race winning streak the 6-year-old gelding brings into Wednesday’s six-furlong race.

But watching the races unfold on Aqueduct’s main track, Kazamias fears that the surface is favoring off-the-pace types.

“Everybody’s wining off the pace,” Kazamias said Monday by phone from his Rising Sun Farm in New Egypt, N.J. “That concerns me a little bit. I’ll talk to the jock and see if we can slow it up in the beginning.”

Flying Zealous, a son of Here’s Zealous, won his debut in fall 2011 by 10 3/4 lengths, running for a claiming price of $12,500 at Parx Racing. Kazamias said that Flying Zealous tore off a significant part of his foot in that race, which is why he didn’t race for nearly 11 months.

After finishing fourth in his return – beaten three-quarters of a length in a starter allowance at Parx last October – Flying Zealous won three starter allowance heats at Parx before winning two allowance races at Aqueduct restricted to New York-breds. Wednesday, he takes on open company.

“I’m not concerned about this [field] at all – a little bit maybe with Jacobson’s horse,” Kazamias.

Kazamias was referring to Regal Strike, who is making his first start off the claim for trainer David Jacobson, who took him for $20,000 out of a winning effort Feb. 23. Regal Strike is one of four horses in for the optional-claiming price of $25,000.

If the track does favor closers or if Flying Zealous gets in a pace duel with Fight for V L T’s or Crown the Chief, that could set things up for Demon’s Deputy.

A son of El Corredor, Demon’s Deputy has won two straight from off the pace, including a starter allowance by a neck over next-out winner Tightend Touchdown.

Leah Gyarmati, trainer of Demon’s Deputy, said the key to that gelding’s success is being ridden as a one-run closer.

“He’s run much, much better that we got it into our heads you have to grab a hold of him,” Gyarmati said. “If he doesn’t win, at least he’ll come running and get a decent piece of it anyway.”

Mike Luzzi rides Demon’s Deputy from post 6.

Alcomatch is only 1 for his last 23, but he has a win and two seconds over Aqueduct’s main track and gets the services of Irad Ortiz Jr.