07/29/2010 4:51PM

Chestoria, You Go West Girl meet again


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – Chestoria and You Go West Girl, two of the top New York-bred female turf runners, square off in Saturday’s $70,000 William B. Fasig Stakes for statebreds at Saratoga.

You Go West Girl defeated Chestoria twice last fall at Belmont, but Chestoria turned the tables on that rival in the Mt. Vernon, also at Belmont, in May. Previously a closer reliant on pace, Chestoria overcame slow fractions in the Mt. Vernon to get the job done.

“Now you can put her where you need to be,” said trainer Bill Badgett, who will have David Cohen on Chestoria for the fourth straight time. “He knows her now. It’s nice to have the same guy ride her all the time.”

Chestoria is 1 for 4 at Saratoga, that one win coming in the Lake Luzerne Stakes here last Aug. 1. On Monday, Chestoria fired a bullet half-mile work in 48 seconds over the Oklahoma turf course.

Badgett will also send out Exclusive Scheme, a 4-year-old daughter of Saarland, who won a starter allowance race at Belmont on July 17.

This race figures to set up similarly to the Mt. Vernon, as there is a distinct lack of pace in the field. Akilina, who reluctantly alternated for the lead in the Mt. Vernon before fading to third, could wind up on the front end again under Rajiv Maragh.

You Go West Girl, trained by Tom Proctor, who has gotten off to a hot start at the meet, was beaten two lengths by Chestoria as the favorite in the Mt. Vernon. She has been freshened for this, but typically runs her best race second off the layoff. She figures to come flying late under Jose Lezcano.

Don’t Forget Gil was a graded stakes winner on dirt last year. She will make her second career start on turf in this spot. In her first grass race, Don’t Forget Gil finished fifth, beaten 7 1/4 lengths in the Grade 1 Garden City over soft ground.

“It was real soft and boggy that day,” trainer Mark Hennig said. “I’m done running her against open company. This gets her back with her New York-bred compadres.”

Hennig said if Don’t Forget Gil doesn’t handle the turf, he could always run her back in the $70,000 Saratoga Dew at 1 1/8 miles on dirt on Aug. 30.