05/30/2007 11:00PM

'Ballistic,' 'Brownie' offer options


GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - When it comes to horses like Going Ballistic and Brownie Points, there are no shortage of options. Both have won stakes on dirt and turf, giving their connections a range of summer races to choose from following productive stakes outings at Lone Star Park on Monday.

Going Ballistic, a 3-year-old, won on turf in the $100,000 USA Stakes.

"You'll see him going back and forth," his trainer, Donnie Von Hemel, said of the dirt and turf. "And then Brownie Points, as far as that goes, she'll probably be going back and forth."

Brownie Points finished a fast-closing second to Lady of Venice in the Grade 3, $200,000 Ouija Board Distaff on turf. Von Hemel said she is being strongly considered for the $125,000 Iowa Distaff Breeders' Cup at Prairie Meadows on June 30.

Going Ballistic will be considered for that track's $250,000 Iowa Derby on June 29. Von Hemel said other options include the $100,000 Alysheba Breeders' Cup for 3-year-olds at a mile at Lone Star on June 30 and the $50,000 Seeking the Gold for 3-year-olds at a mile on turf at Louisiana Downs on June 23. Von Hemel said there also are dirt and turf stakes options for Going Ballistic at Churchill Downs and Arlington Park.

"In the next few months, there's a lot of places to look with him," Von Hemel said.

The USA was Going Ballistic's first win of 2007. Earlier this year he finished fourth and fifth behind Curlin in the Rebel and Arkansas Derby, respectively, and third as the favorite in the $60,000 Grand Prairie Turf Challenge at Lone Star in April. The USA served as a good confidence builder for him.

"We ran against some tough horses at Oaklawn," Von Hemel said. "His first out here, I'll take the blame there. It turns out he wasn't 100 percent that day. He just was rather dull. It's good to see him get back in the winner's circle."

Going Ballistic won his first stakes last September in the $100,000 El Joven at a mile on turf at Retama Park. A month later, he became a stakes winner on dirt by winning the $100,000 MEC Mile at Remington Park.

Trainer Palmer dies at 82

Jay Palmer, who was one of the oldest active trainers in Texas, died Wednesday at his home in Campbell, Texas, after a long illness. He was 82.

"He ran a few horses this year," trainer Jack Palmer said of his father, who was born in Rheinhart, Texas.

Jack Palmer said his father began training in 1957. He raced in many states, including Texas, New Mexico, and West Virginia. Jay Palmer is survived by his wife, Carlyn, and three sons who are trainers - Jack, Jay, and Jim.

Special Topics leads field in wins

Special Topics is the winningest entrant in Saturday's featured ninth race, a first-level allowance for 3-year-olds and up on turf. He has won 5 of 23 starts.

Special Topics is moving back into the allowance ranks following a close fifth-place finish over $25,000 claiming foes at Lone Star on May 17. The race was his first start since winning back-to-back turf claimers at Remington Park in October and November. Trainer Jack Bruner has given the mount to Iram Diego.