06/18/2007 11:00PM

Blinkers help raise Mach Ride's game


MIAMI - Mach Ride won his first four starts and held his own against some of the top 3-year-old sprinters in the country last year, so it was hard to believe it had been a full year between winner's circle visits for Mach Ride when he posted a 7 1/2-length triumph in the Champali Stakes at Calder on Saturday.

Mach Ride's last victory had come here on June 16, 2006, in the Valid Video Stakes when he rallied to a two-length win over How's Your Halo. The same two hooked up again in the six-furlong Champali, this time dueling head to head through lightning-fast fractions before Mach Ride, equipped with blinkers for the first time in his career, drew off to the easy win.

"I felt the blinkers were going to move him up, but I didn't think he would run like that," said Steve Standridge, who trains the homebred Mach Ride for the Rustlewood Farm.

Mach Ride earned a career-high 107 Beyer Speed Figure in the Champali. His previous best of 103 came on the 2006 Summit of Speed card, when he finished second behind the odds-on Too Much Bling after racing against the grain of a track bias in the Grade 2 Carry Back Stakes.

Mach Ride ran big in defeat following the Carry Back, including a troubled fourth-place finish in Saratoga's Grade 1 King's Bishop, a third in Gulfstream Park's Grade 3 Mr. Prospector to start his 2007 campaign, and a fifth-place finish behind Bordonaro this spring in Oaklawn Park's Grade 3 Count Fleet.

"We started talking about putting blinkers on him after the race at Oaklawn," said Standridge. "He's a stud horse and was starting to get a little smarter and probably not putting out a hundred percent. He's had some bad luck, and we've also made some mistakes with him along the way. But hopefully now, after his performance Saturday, we've got him straightened away."

Standridge will now set his sights for a second time on the Summit of Speed card, on July 7. Mach Ride's next start likely will be in the Gradeo2, $500,000 Smile Sprint.

"Hopefully, this last race wasn't too much for him since he'll have to come back in only three weeks for the Smile," said Standridge. "Obviously, after an effort like this we have to take a shot at the big one, although it's not going to be easy with fast horses like Fabulous Strike and Smokey Stover coming to town for the race."

Finallymadeit turns it around

Finallymadeit rebounded from a disappointing performance in Maryland on Preakness Day and succeeded Mach Ride as the Valid Video champion with an impressive three-length victory in that overnight stakes here on Sunday.

And like Mach Ride a year ago, Finallymadeit is expected to use the effort as a springboard into the $300,000 Carry Back.

Trained by Javier Negrette, Finallymadeit topped a strong field in the Valid Video, including Yesbyjimminy, Frosty's Secret, and Izzie's Halo - all of whom might also run next in the Carry Back.

Coa wins on visit

Eibar Coa made one of his rare spring-summer visits to Calder on Monday, and won the second race aboard odds-on favorite Rubicon for trainer Bill White.

The victory was the third in as many mounts here this meet for Belmont Park's leading jockey. Alas, his bid to remain perfect ended when he finished off the board in Monday's seventh race, on Song Song Blue.

Coa won four Calder riding titles and three Tropical-at-Calder championships when he was a regular here from 1996-2000.

Seven in Thursday feature

Irish Gypsy Rose, Lauraelises Sister, Angel Wings, and Love Snucks head a field of seven older fillies and mares set to go six furlongs in Thursday's $26,000 allowance feature.

Irish Gypsy Rose and Love Snucks each won two of their last three starts. Lauraelises Sister will be making her 80th career start on Thursday but her first for trainer Bill White, who claimed the hard-knocking 7-year-old for $16,000 on June 4.

Angel Wings earned high marks when she won a maiden $16,000 claiming dash by nearly 13 lengths in her local debut on May 14.