08/29/2002 11:00PM

Caught Out solid play wet or dry


If you're uncertain whether Monmouth Park's turf course will be firm, soft, or simply unusable for the co-featured Omnibus Stakes on Sunday's closing day program, there is a simple solution. Just figure on playing Caught Out no matter what the conditions.

Caught Out, a 4-year-old filly trained by Michael Dickinson, has proven her prowess over firm turf, soft grass, and dirt. She has identical records of 3 for 7 on both dirt and grass.

Caught Out must be considered a serious threat under almost every possible circumstance for the $50,000 stakes, scheduled for one mile on turf.

Dating back to last December, Caught Out has won four of her last five races. Her lone defeat came when she stepped up to graded stakes company for the Eatontown Handicap four weeks ago, and even then, she was moving well at the end to finish within two lengths of the winner, Clearly a Queen. A model of consistency, Caught Out has posted Beyer Speed Figures between 90 and 93 in her four starts this season.

If the turf course is soft, 7-year-old mare Quidnaskra could be Caught Out's most dangerous opponent. The last time she raced over a yielding surface, in the Grade 3 Gallorette Handicap at Pimlico in mid-May, Quidnaskra responded with a victory. She's 0 for 3 since then, all on firm turf.

If the race gets moved to the main track, New York shipper Victory Ride should be favored. She's 4 for 6 lifetime on dirt, including three consecutive Beyers of 100 or better and a win in last year's Grade 1 Test at Saratoga. Victory Ride, trained by Rusty Arnold, has not raced since May 18.

The Omnibus shares top billing with another $50,000, one-mile turf stakes, the Junior Champion for 2-year-old fillies.

If the race remains on turf, it's a real guessing game for handicappers because most of the 11 fillies in the field have neither raced on grass nor shown strong bloodlines for the surface.

Echo D'or, trained by Bud Delp and ridden by Eibar Coa, is the only horse with a turf win at the distance. She won a maiden race at Colonial Downs, leading wire to wire.

Golden Show, an off-the-pace winner in a Colonial Downs turf sprint in her only start, appears able to stretch out to a mile.

Sweet Little Avie finished within a length of Echo D'Or in July, but hasn't been able to improve upon that performance in two starts since then and she must start from post 11.