08/20/2007 12:00AM

Crossing the line takes Del Mar Mile


Crossing the Line unleashed a rally at the top of the stretch of the $400,000 Del Mar Mile that carried him to the winner's circle - and possibly to the Breeders' Cup Mile at Monmouth Park on Oct. 27.

Crossing the Line ($6.60) won the Grade 2 Del Mar Mile by three-quarters of a length over Becrux, finishing a mile on turf in 1:32.59. With the victory, he earned an automatic berth to the BC Mile, if the partnership that owns the 5-year-old New Zealand-bred gelding chooses to pay a supplemental fee.

Crossing the Line's late kick carried him from seventh to the front in the final quarter-mile. Ridden by Garrett Gomez, Crossing the Line was in eighth place for the first half-mile. He rallied five wide to reach the front in the final sixteenth. Becrux finished a length in front of Isipingo in the field of nine. Out of Control, the 8-5 favorite, finished sixth after leading in the stretch.

Trained by John Sadler, Crossing the Line has won 5 of 6 starts and $257,168. Sadler said the $250,000 Oak Tree Mile at Santa Anita on Oct. 7 was a likely start before a decision is made on the BC Mile.

Pat O'Brien: Greg's Gold scores

Polytrack may be a bugaboo for a horse like Bordonaro, but for Greg's Gold, it is manna from heaven.

Greg's Gold was off the track with a tendon injury to his right front leg from July 2005 until February, but he has been able to race six times so far this year, twice this summer at Del Mar, and on Sunday he scored his most important win since his comeback with a 1 1/2-length victory in the Grade 2, $300,000 Pat O'Brien Handicap.

Greg's Gold ($6), under Victor Espinoza, stalked the soft pace set by Bordonaro, took over emphatically heading into the stretch, then safely held off favored Surf Cat and completed seven furlongs in 1:23.95. It was another 5 1/2 lengths back to third-place finisher Soul City Slew. Bordonaro, who never appeared comfortable on the surface, faded to finish last in the field of six.

"He loves this track. He just glides over this track," said David Hofmans, who trains Greg's Gold for Bill Boswell, who bred and owns Greg's Gold. "From the moment he got here he loved it. He likes Hollywood Park, and this track, too. He floats over it."

With the win, Greg's Gold earned an automatic berth in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Sprint. Greg's Gold, 6, is a gelding by Lake George. He has now won 7 times in 19 starts. His biggest win before going to the sidelines was the 2005 Bing Crosby Handicap at Del Mar.- Jay Privman

* Silky Smooth won her California debut in the $89,275 Viejas Casino Handicap for 3-year-old fillies, running a mile on turf in 1:34.60. Ridden by Aaron Gryder for trainer Jeff Mullins, Silky Smooth ($5.20) was third early and reached the front with a three-wide move on the turn. Honored Gold, beaten a half-length, finished second and was a half-length in front of Nootka Island.