08/11/2005 11:00PM

Blonde Executive to breeding shed

Michael Burns Photo Ltd.
Blonde Executive (7) wins the La Prevoyante in September 2004, the final start of her career.

ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Blonde Executive, Canada's champion sprinter of 2004, has been retired to the breeding shed.

A homebred 4-year-old filly owned by Bruno Brothers Farm and trained by Radlie Loney, Blonde Executive had her last campaign cut short in October and did not return to the racetrack until June.

Blonde Executive's preparations appeared to be proceeding well when she drilled four furlongs in 47.80 seconds here July 23, but that work turned out to be the last of her career.

"She came up with a little bit of a problem again," said Loney. "She didn't show any lameness after she cooled out. The vet said she'd be okay, but we'd have to give her some time. She was going to need maybe three months."

Owners Don and John Bruno conferred with Loney earlier this week, and the decision was made to retire Blonde Executive.

"If we missed another three months, the whole year would be wasted," said Loney. "We could bring her back next year, but there's no guarantee she wouldn't get hurt again."

An Ontario-sired daughter of Bold Executive and Dream Smartly, Blonde Executive won 8 of 13 starts, all under jockey Richard Dos Ramos. She finished in the money 10 times and had earnings of $610,591.

Her first stakes win came at 2, in the six-furlong Victorian Queen for Ontario-sired fillies. Last year, Blonde Executive won four stakes, including the Grade 3 Duchess, an open race for 3-year-old fillies at seven furlongs in August. Before the Duchess victory, Blonde Executive won the Lady Angela at seven furlongs on the main track in May and the Passing Mood at seven furlongs on turf in July. Both of those races were for Ontario-sired 3-year-old fillies. In the final start of her career, Blonde Executive won the La Prevoyante, a one-mile turf race for Ontario-sired 3-year-old fillies.

"She always tried so hard," said Loney. "I'm definitely going to miss her. But it looks like her brother might take her spot."

That tall order has been inherited by Main Executive, a 3-year-old gelding by Bold Executive out of Dream Smartly. Main Executive made his debut here Aug. 5 in an open maiden special, leading through fractions of 22.39, 44.96, and 1:09.60 before yielding to finish one length back in second. He earned an 83 Beyer Speed Figure. The winning time for 6 1/2 furlongs was 1:16.04.

"I thought he lost the race at the gate," said Loney. "He'd been good in the gate all the time, but competition is a different thing. When he went into the gate, with horses on either side of him, he started looking around. He was nervous and wouldn't stay still. He broke a couple of lengths behind."

Hopmans stays high on Moon Worship

Although Moon Worship disappointed some of his followers by finishing second when solidly backed for the Clarendon Stakes last time out, trainer Cliff Hopmans still has plenty of glowing tributes to offer as Moon Worship comes back to face four rivals here in Sunday's $159,900 Vandal Stakes at six furlongs.

Moon Worship finished furiously in his 4 1/2-furlong debut here June 12 and then was a very impressive winner at five furlongs July 2 in his second start. After some consideration, Hopmans entered Moon Worship back in the 5 1/2-furlong Clarendon a week later.

"I had a little anxiety running him back that quick," said Hopmans. "But he came out of it totally unscathed. Having that extra race under his belt, the experience, could be a blessing in disguise. He's had two sensational works since then, and they've both been very easy. He's a dead-fit horse."

Hopmans also said he believes Moon Worship will appreciate the extra distance of the Vandal.

"There's no question in my mind; the farther they go the better with this guy," said Hopmans. "I think six furlongs will be a stepping-stone to his best distance, which will probably be around two turns. He has a big, long stride, and he's very professional. Nothing fazes this horse."

Ablo works for West Virginia Derby

Ablo breezed three furlongs in a bullet 35.60 on a "good" training track here Friday morning before shipping out for Mountaineer Park and Sunday's $750,000 West Virginia Derby. Regular rider Gerry Olguin was aboard for the drill and has the call Sunday.

"He went great," said trainer Roger Attfield, who will be visiting Mountaineer for the first time.

Ablo comes into the 1 1/8-mile West Virginia Derby off a game win in Fort Erie's 1 3/16-mile Prince of Wales on July 17.

Handicapping Challenge spots still available

The entry box is still open for Woodbine's annual Thoroughbred Handicapping Challenge, with approximately 80 spots available heading into this weekend.

The two-day contest will be held here Aug. 27-28 and will be limited to 225 players. If fully subscribed, the contest will have $56,250 in total purse money, with $23,062.50 going to the winner. The entry fee is $250.

The top three finishers will earn a spot in the 2006 Daily Racing Form/National Thoroughbred Racing Association National Handicapping Championship in Las Vegas.

* The turf training course will be getting its annual vacation, beginning Monday and continuing through Sept. 1.