11/17/2002 12:00AM

Crafty Shaw takes Schaefer Mile

Jim Linscott
Crafty Shaw crosses the wire a 1 1/2-length victor in the $103,600 Michael G. Schaefer Mile Saturday night at Hoosier Park.

ANDERSON, Ind. - Crafty Shaw returned to the winner's circle with a strong 1 1/4 length win over five others in Saturday's $103,600 Michael G. Schaefer Mile.

Under a good ride from James Lopez, Crafty Shaw followed along just off the early pace set by Strike Reality for a half mile. Lopez edged up outside to put a head in front approaching the stretch then went strongly to hold M B Sea at bay in a meet-best 1:35.69 over a track rated good but showing signs of a frozen base. The time was more than two seconds faster than the previous best at the distance this season.

M B Sea, an improving 3-year-old trained by Dale Romans, made a run at the winner but could not match strides while finishing two lengths better than Cool N Collective in third. A field of ten was listed to start but the defections of Regal Battle, Slider, Twilight Road and Virtual G left a field of six to go postward.

Trained by Pete Vestal, Crafty Shaw was collecting his fourth stakes win of the year. Prior to a distant third in the Fayette at Keeneland, Crafty Shaw had captured the Turfway Park Fall Championship along with two stakes wins this spring. A 4-year-old son of Crafty Prospector, Crafty Shaw boosted his lifetime mark to 9-0-3 from 19 starts and earnings of more than $400,000.

Also featured on the card was the $74,000 Indiana Futurity for state-bred colts and geldings. K K Avey, ridden by Jon Court, rallied boldly through the stretch to run down Groovy Zone and post a 1 length win in 1:11.98 for the six furlongs. Trained by Roger Anderson, K K Avey was breaking his maiden in his fourth career start with the rich win.