08/25/2009 11:00PM

Asmussen poised to end meet with a flourish

Barbara D. Livingston
Hot Dixie Chick comes into the Spinaway off a victory in the Schuylerville on opening day.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - At Saratoga this summer, trainer Steve Asmussen is hoping to save some of the best for last. In addition to sending out Rachel Alexandra in the Grade 1, $750,000 Woodward Stakes on Sept. 5, he is hoping to nail down two more Grade 1 races the final two days of the meeting, with the filly Hot Dixie Chick in the Grade 1, $300,000 Spinaway Stakes on Sept. 6, and the colt Enumerate in the Grade 1, $300,000 Hopeful Stakes on closing day, Sept. 7.

On Wednesday morning, Asmussen put both 2-year-olds together for a five-furlong workout over the Saratoga main track, and they were sharp, with Hot Dixie Chick being timed in 59.67 seconds, Enumerate in 59.69 seconds.

"I just wanted to put a nice move in them," Asmussen said. "They generally go in company, but not with each other. But they needed to have a pretty good move. Because of the rain, it had been 10 days since their last work. I wanted a decent move."

Both the Spinaway and Hopeful are at seven furlongs. Both Asmussen runners are coming into their respective races with excellent efforts over this track the first week of the meet. Hot Dixie Chick won the Grade 3 Schuylerville on opening day July 29, and Enumerate was second to Backtalk in the Sanford on July 30.

Westover Wildcat works on turf for Hopeful

The 2-year-old maiden winner Westover Wildcat will make his next start in the Hopeful, a dirt stakes. To get him there, however, trainer Tony Dutrow decided on Wednesday to work the colt five furlongs over the Oklahoma training turf course.

Westover Wildcat went that distance in 1:01.44 under jockey Ramon Dominguez, outworking the 7-year-old turf sprint stakes winner Redefined, who was timed in 1:01.55. It was Westover Wildcat's third breeze since he won a maiden race here by two lengths on July 30. It was his first breeze on the grass.

"To be easier on him,'' Dutrow said when asked why he worked the colt on turf. "I galloped him on it a couple of times, he went really well, so I went ahead and breezed him on it. These 2-year-olds, to breeze them every seven or eight days on dirt, I didn't want a shin to pop up. The turf is going to be kinder.''

Dutrow's only concern is that Westover Wildcat is showing such an affinity for the turf that maybe "he won't like the dirt anymore."

"I could run the risk of that, but that's what I wanted to do, so that's what I did,'' he said.

Westover Wildcat won a maiden race here on July 30 by two lengths, earning a Beyer Speed Figure of 83.

"I'm real happy with him,'' Dutrow said. "I just hope he's good enough.''

Empire Classic winners clash in Funny Cide

Dr. V's Magic and Stud Muffin, the last two winners of the $250,000 Empire Classic, head a seven-horse field entered in Friday's $78,000 Funny Cide Stakes for New York-breds.

Dr. V's Magic won the 2007 Empire Classic, but did not win again until three weeks ago when he took a $50,000 stakes race in the slop at Finger Lakes. Stud Muffin has lost five consecutive starts since winning last year's Empire Classic.

Both horses would benefit from a contested pace and they figure to get it with the presence of R Clear Victory, Freddy the Cap, and Future Prospect in the field. On July 31, R Clear Victory led Future Prospect from start to finish to win the High Rock Spring Stakes by 1 1/2 lengths. That race was in the slop.

Dr. D.F.C. is winless in 10 starts since winning the Solomon Northup here last year, but he rarely runs a bad race, especially at Saratoga.

Options abound for So N So

So N So, who remained unbeaten against New York-bred 2-year-old fillies with a victory in the Lucy Scribner Stakes on Monday, has a couple of options for her next start, according to trainer Tom Bush.

"I'll probably nominate her to the Matron," Bush said Wednesday morning, referring to the Grade 2, $250,000 Matron Stakes at seven furlongs on Sept. 19 at Belmont Park, "but maybe I'll look for something against New York-breds again.

"It had been a long time between races for her. It wasn't ideal, but it worked out. She's growing too, and I want to be careful and not do too much."

* Flashing, winner of the Grade 1 Test, worked three furlongs in 37.23 seconds Wednesday morning over the main track. She is being pointed to the Grade 2, $750,000 Fitz Dixon Cotillion Stakes at Philadelphia Park on Oct. 3.

- additional reporting by David Grening