06/12/2004 11:00PM

Black Bart best in Quicken Tree


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Black Bart, the former $16,000 claimer, scored his second stakes win of the Hollywood Park meeting in Sunday's $76,800 Quicken Tree Stakes for state-breds.

The Quicken Tree was a prep to the $125,000 Claiming Crown Jewel Stakes at Canterbury Park on July 17, trainer Troy Bainum said.

Ridden by Alex Solis, Black Bart was always close to the pace in the Quicken Tree, run over 1 1/2 miles on turf. He led for the first half-mile, stalked Shalini for a half-mile and regained the lead on the final turn.

Black Bart, 5, won by two lengths over Remonte, finishing in 2:28.05. Ringaskiddy, the 2001 winner, finished third in the field of six.

Solis was not concerned about Black Bart losing the lead, but said he had to urge his mount back to the front on the backstretch. "I had to put him back in the bit," he said. "He was very relaxed."

Owned by Tom Metzger, Sr., Black Bart has won 6 of 8 starts and $219,909 since being claimed last December. During that span, he won two minor stakes at Turf Paradise and the Khaled Stakes for state-breds here in April. In between stakes wins, he finished third against open company in the minor Ack Ack Handicap on May 31.