08/07/2001 11:00PM

Balto Star possible for Pennsylvania Derby


Macho Uno isn't the only well-known 3-year-old looking to run in next month's Grade 3 Pennsylvania Derby at Philadelphia Park.

Balto Star, a front-runner who used his speed to win a pair of Grade 2 stakes on the road to the Kentucky Derby, is considered a strong possibility for the Sept. 3 Pennsylvania Derby, which is worth $500,000.

According to trainer Todd Pletcher, Balto Star may be better suited for the 1 1/8 miles of the Pennsylvania Derby than the 1 1/4 miles of the Travers at Saratoga on Aug. 25.

Balto Star rose to prominence by winning the Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park, earning a Beyer Speed Figure of 112, and the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park with a Beyer of 109. But he finished 14th in the Kentucky Derby and faded to eighth in his most recent start, the Belmont Stakes on June 9.

According to the track's racing office, other possibilities for the Pennsylvania Derby include Outofthebox, runner-up in both the Fountain of Youth and the Florida Derby, and Touch Tone, who came close to upsetting Point Given in last weekend's Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park.