05/29/2006 11:00PM

Aragorn wins Shoemaker Breeders' Cup Mile

Shining Energy wins Monday's $349,500 Gamely Breeders' Cup Stakes.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Five months before the Breeders' Cup Mile is run at Churchill Downs, Aragorn is displaying the sort of form that would fit in the nation's leading race for turf milers.

Monday at Hollywood Park, Aragorn won the most important race of his career in the $321,000 .

Ridden by Corey Nakatani, Aragorn ($15), the 6-1 longshot in a field of six, was always near the front and zoomed past pacesetter Willow O Wisp in early stretch to win the Grade 1 Shoemaker by 1 3-4 lengths. Aragorn ran a mile on turf in 1:32.95.

Charmo, who beat Aragorn by a length in the Grade 2 San Francisco Mile at Golden Gate Fields on April 29, closed from fourth to finish second, a neck in front of 9-5 favorite Silent Name. Willow O Wisp, Diamond Green and Milk it Mick completed the order of finish.

Aragorn stalked Willow O Wisp through early fractions of 24.61 and 47.88, a slow pace that left trainer Neil Drysdale delighted with Aragorn's position.

"That was the plan," Drysdale said. "I thought he was in a great spot when I saw the half. He ran very true."

Nakatani kept Aragorn within a length of Willow O Wisp before making a move before the field reached the stretch.

"I knew there was no pace and I tried to be patient," Nakatani said. "He was full of run beneath me. He gave me quite a kick."

Silent Name, who beat Aragorn by a head in the Arcadia Handicap at Santa Anita in April, could not keep pace in the final furlong and was beaten two lengths.

"I couldn't have been in a better spot," said Gary Mandella, who trains Silent Name. "We took our shot. Maybe he's not as good on this kind of course as he is at Santa Anita, (a course) with a little more give."

Aragorn, 4, races for breeder Ballygallon Stud. He has won 3 of 10 starts and $465,325.

"Hopefully, he has a big year in front of him," Drysdale said.

*Shining Energy changed Victor Espinoza's perspective of Monday's $349,500 very quickly in early stretch.

"I was last and the next thing I knew I was on the lead," Espinoza said. "That surprised me."

The burst of speed turned out to be a winning move as Shining Energy rolled past six rivals to win the first Grade 1 of her 15-race career in the Gamely for fillies and mares.

Owned by Terry Lanni and Bernie Schiappa and trained by Julio Canani, Shining Energy ran 1 1-8 miles on turf in 1:46.86.

Shining Energy ($14.80) pulled clear in the final sixteenth to win by 1 3-4 lengths over 10-1 Dancing Edie, the pacesetter. Argentina, the 6-5 favorite, finished third after leading in the stretch. The first three finishers have been invited to the $750,000 CashCall Mile on turf on July 1.

Argentina was followed by Hollywood Story, Eternal Melody, Sharp Lisa and Ticker Tape.

Shining Energy was last for the first six furlongs, well behind Dancing Edie who set early fractions of 24.67 and 48.64 seconds. Dancing Edie's lead was reduced to a head on the final turn where Shining Energy trailed by three lengths. Espinoza moved Shining Energy to the outside on the turn and closed ground with a five-wide move. Espinoza said there was too much traffic to wait for space on the rail.

"If I went to the inside, it wasn't going to happen" he said. "I eased her back a little and

as soon as I got to the outside, I knew it was better."

The Gamely was Shining Energy's fourth stakes win and improved her earnings to $514,837.

Monday's race marked the first time that Espinoza had ridden Shining Energy. "When I was warming her up, I thought, She's a nice filly," he said.

Her performance proved that he was correct.