08/06/2007 11:00PM

Big City Dance takes shot at higher level


OCEANPORT, N.J. - Trying to make green while the grass is available, trainer Tim Hills is jumping a condition with Big City Danse in the $45,000 allowance and optional claiming feature Thursday at Monmouth Park.

The 5-year-old Big City Danse will face eight rivals in the third-level turf race for fillies and mares with a $50,000 claiming option. Gipsy Limits, part of an entry with Brassy Boots, was entered as a main-track alternate.

For Hills, the decision came down to a desire to get Big City Danse back on the turf.

"I'm skipping a condition with her, and the surface is the main thing," Hills said. "With turf sprinters, you can't be picky. You go when the going is good."

Big City Danse made her season debut, and first start for Hills, here on July 18 in a second-level race that came off the turf.

The field scratched down to four in the slop, and Big City Danse finished third.

"She got a lot out of that race off the layoff, and she's doing well coming into this," Hills said.

The mare did well in limited grass-sprint opportunities last year for trainer Kelly Breen. Her best effort was a neck loss in the Phoenix Stakes at the Meadowlands.

Jose Lezcano will ride.

Joe Bravo, Monmouth's leading rider, picks up the mount on Weeks, who has blossomed in the two races since trainer Michael Pino switched her to turf sprints.

She followed an easy win over claimers at Delaware Park with a commanding second-level allowance victory at Colonial Downs on July 6. Her Beyer Speed Figures of 87 and 88 in those two victories are clearly the best recent numbers in the field.

Trainer Juan Serey is only 1 for 20 at the meet through last weekend, but many of his runners have been competitive, with eight seconds and two thirds. The leading trainer here five straight years starting in 1995, Serey will try to get back into the win column with Lakes Tune, who set the pace in Big City Danse's season debut and held for second.

Like Big City Danse, Lakes Tune is on the comeback trail. The last race was her first since October 2005. She is a turf-sprint stakes winner here, having captured the 2005 edition of the Crank It Up.

Tommy Turner has the return call.

Wild Berry has run in five straight stakes this season and most recently was fifth in the Light Hearted at Delaware Park.

Completing the field are Disco Disco Jan, Private Indeed, and Bereba.