08/08/2007 12:00AM

Cold Trial tops Cleveland Kindergarten Stakes


Cold Trial heads a field of nine Ohio-bred 2-year-olds, including a three-horse entry trained by Tim Hamm, in the $50,000 Cleveland Kindergarten Stakes at Thistledown Friday.

Cold Trial, a son of Changeintheweather, is the strongest part of the entry. He has not been beaten in three career starts but was disqualified from a first-place finish and placed third in his debut at Mountaineer Park. In his last start, he rallied from just off the pace to post a two-length win in the 5 1/2-furlong Hoover Stakes at River Downs. Regular rider Luis Martinez will be aboard at 118 pounds.

Cold Trial's main opposition should come from O'Riain and Gold Rush Casey.

O'Riain is a quick Mercer Mill colt who set the pace in the Hoover Stakes before finishing second. He was a front-running winner in his only other start.

Gold Rush Casey, an entrymate of Cold Trial, was a solid third in the Hoover. He dueled for the lead with O'Riain until midstretch that day before tiring to be beaten by 2 1/4 lengths.

* Jeffrey Skerrett, who was Thistledown's leading apprentice rider in 1997, and a regular here ever since, was one winner shy of 1,000 wins entering Wednesday.