04/09/2008 11:00PM

Blind River Fox back to dirt


Blind River Fox, the veteran sprinter shooting for his 20th win, returns to the main track Saturday at Tampa Bay Downs after two turf starts, and is the horse to beat in the seven-furlong starter allowance feature. The race is for horses that have started for a claiming price of $16,000 or less since Jan. 1, 2007. The race is slated as the ninth race on the 11-race program.

Daniel Centeno, who is rapidly closing in on his own record for races won in a single meeting at Tampa, will handle Blind River Fox again at 122 pounds.

Silver Peagus, winner here of his last three outings, will make his first start for the Greg Griffin stable Saturday and tops the challengers at 122 with jockey Pablo Morales.

Blind River Fox, a well-traveled pro, tried turf for the first time after 42 starts on March 21 and handled the new experience well. He pressed the pace from the outset and drew clear late to post a two-length win over a very tough customer in Constitution River. He covered the about five furlongs in 57.57 seconds.

Blind River Fox came back last time with tougher company and rallied past stakes winner Lite Brigade leaving the furlong marker for a 1 3/4-length tally, this time covering the five furlongs on turf in 57.84. Trained by Javier Contreras, Blind River Fox has finished first or second in 33 of his 44 starts.

Silver Peagus climbed the claiming ladder this meeting for trainer Jamie Ness, winning for $16,000, $20,000, and $32,000 before being haltered by Griffith from that last win on March 15. The grey 8-year-old looks like the chief speed rival in Saturday's headliner, and if able to handle the seven furlongs should prove tough.

Balanced Attack, winner of his last two with strong late rallies, moves into starter allowance company for the first time this meeting. He gets an additional sixteenth from his last race for his late-running style. Willie Martinez Jr. will be aboard.

Anglers Reef, one of the top sprinters on the grounds here last meeting, moves back to a sprint distance after going long last out. He has seven wins, including four over the local strip.