09/04/2004 11:00PM

Arvada, Humaita win Glens Falls split divisions

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SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - John Velazquez coasted Arvada through slow early fractions in the second division of the Grade 3 Glens Falls Handicap, and the filly had enough left in the tank down the stretch to hold off Spice Island and Film Maker.

The $100,000 Glens Falls was split into two divisions because it had 17 entrants.

Arvada, trained by Bobby Frankel, was making her stakes debut in the U.S. in her fifth start in the country. She had run in four allowance races dating back to March, with an allowance victory here on August 11 only her second career victory. The English-bred 4-year-old was a Group 1 performer in France last year.

Arvada ($8.50) led from gate to wire and held off Spice Island by one-half length. Film Maker lost the head bob for the place spot. Arvada covered 11 furlongs in 2:14.12 over a firm turf course before a crowd of 51,253.

Frankel said that the decision to send Arvada to the front, rather than try to rate her, has led to her recent success.

"We ride her differently now," he said. "In the past we tried to rate her, but then we decided to let her go."

In the first division of the Glens Falls, Humaita wore down 4-5 favorite Where We Left Off in the final sixteenth to win by one-half length. The early pacesetter, Savedbythelight, was third.

Humaita ($13.40), with Cornelio Velazquez aboard, covered 11 furlongs in 2:15.25 over a firm turf course.

Trainer Graham Motion said before the Grade 3 Glens Falls Handicap that he had been targeting the German-bred Humaita to this race for over a month, since a fourth-place finish in the Grade 2 New York Handicap July 5. On Sunday, Motion's plan worked to perfection.

Humaita, a 4-year-old daughter of Surumu owned by Andreas Jacobs, started her career in Germany with trainer Andreas Wohler, but since being transferred to Motion has made six starts in this country.

Motion said he had been looking for a spot to run Humaita at long distances, because she raced at distances ranging from 10 furlongs to 12 furlongs in Germany. The Glens Falls was her second stakes win in the U.S. and first graded-stakes victory. Humaita will be pointed to the Grade 1 Flower Bowl at Belmont October 2, Motion said.