06/27/2007 11:00PM

Crosstown moves back to dirt

Email

GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - Forty Grams is clearly the one to beat Saturday in the $100,000 Alysheba Breeders' Cup at Lone Star Park following a trio of solid graded stakes starts. But the race also drew some improving 3-year-olds of note, including Crosstown.

Crosstown will be moving back to dirt for the one-mile Alysheba, and his last three main-track starts have resulted in wins. In his most recent out, he made his turf debut and was eighth in the $100,000 USA Stakes on the Lone Star Million Day card here May 28.

"That race was a complete throwout," said Bret Calhoun, who trains Crosstown for Cobra Cooper Racing.

Calhoun feels Crosstown could be a horse who handles turf, but when he entered him in the USA he thought the race might be forced to the main track, where Crosstown was riding a win streak. The USA was run before the two main turf races on the May 28 card, the Gradeo3, $200,000 Dallas Turf Cup and the Grade 3, $200,000 Ouija Board Distaff.

"I thought they would probably protect [the turf] and just run the two graded races on it," Calhoun said. "But they ran it on there and the track was soft, and he didn't like it at all."

Prior to the turf start, Crosstown sped through his conditions. He won a six-furlong maiden race in a strong 1:10.60 at Sam Houston on Dec. 18. One race later, he won a first-level allowance at the same track and distance Feb. 18.

Crosstown then made his two-turn debut in a one-mile race at Lone Star on April 29. He set the pace and won by 2 1/2 lengths over older horses that included stakes winner Admiral's Arch.

For the Alysheba, Crosstown could get a tracking trip behind a pair of promising 3-year-olds stretching out, the rail-drawn Gold Wonder and recent allowance winner Cherokee Wind.

"If somebody wants to go too fast, I think he can sit off of them," Calhoun said.

Bobby Walker Jr. has the mount on Crosstown.

Forty Grams is seeking his first stakes win in the Alysheba. He has picked up checks in all five of his stakes starts, his last three coming in graded company. He was third in the Grade 2 Lexington in April, third in the Grade 3 Lone Star Derby in May, and fifth last out in the Grade 2 Ohio Derby.

Steve Asmussen trains Forty Grams and has given the mount to Cliff Berry.

Nice Inheritance leads Oaks

Asmussen also will start the probable favorite in the $50,000 Lone Star Oaks here Saturday. Nice Inheritance comes into the 1 1/16-mile turf race for 3-year-old fillies off a runner-up finish to champion Dreaming of Anna in the $47,000 Double Delta at Arlington Park on June 2.

Nice Inheritance is the most accomplished member of the Oaks field as a stakes winner on dirt and turf. She won the $50,000 Cimarron on turf at Remington Park last November. In her first start this year, she captured the $50,000 Island Fashion at Sunland Park in February.

Nice Inheritance won the Cimarron under Justin Shepherd, whom she will be reunited with Saturday on her return to this region. Nice Inheritance will break from the rail and could get a decent pace to stalk courtesy of She's Outrageous and Plan Nine.