08/22/2002 12:00AM

Del Mar Show cuts back to his best distance


After gutting out a neck victory in the nine-furlong Bernard Baruch Handicap four weeks ago, Del Mar Show cuts back to his preferred distance of 1 1/16 miles Saturday when he meets eight rivals in the $200,000, Grade 2 Fourstardave Handicap.

Del Mar Show is 5 for 5 at the Fourstardave distance, including stakes wins at Gulfstream, Woodbine, and Hialeah

"Going a mile and a sixteenth, maybe you get a little more speed in there, and that's good for his closing kick," trainer Bill Mott said when asked about Del Mar Show's prowess at the distance. "He always seems to get a little late going a mile and an eighth."

Del Mar Show has won his last two starts under Jerry Bailey from a stalking position. Having drawn post 2, and with the likely pacesetter, Pyrus, inside of him, Del Mar Show figures to work out a similar stalking trip. At 121 pounds, Del Mar Show must concede four to nine pounds to the field.

The omnipresent Bobby Frankel will be represented in the Fourstardave with Kappa King, who comes off a neck loss to Falcon Flight in the Grade 3 Arlington Handicap on July 27. Falcon Flight was part of the five-way photo finish in last Saturday's Arlington Million.

Kappa King has run three times for Frankel, winning an allowance race in May before finishing third as the even-money favorite in the American Handicap at Hollywood Park on July Fourth.

"I think the turf was too hard for him," Frankel said. "The turf will be perfect for him this week. I think he likes a little cut in the ground."

The value of the race could be Capsized, who is 2 for 2 at Saratoga and has run well in graded stakes company elsewhere in the past. Capsized gets in with 114 pounds and has Jose Santos, who has been aboard for both Saratoga turf wins.

Ballston Spa: Voodoo Dancer perfect at route

Voodoo Dancer turned in a super effort, albeit a losing one, to finish second in the Grade 2 Diana, a nose behind Tates Creek, earlier in the Saratoga meet.

The Diana should set up Voodoo Dancer nicely for Saturday's $200,000 Ballston Spa Breeders' Cup Handicap.

The 1 1/16-mile Ballston Spa Breeders' Cup begins the guaranteed $1 million pick four. Voodoo Dancer, the only Grade 1 winner in the field, might be a single on many pick four tickets, but the Grade 3 Ballston Spa Breeders' Cup isn't necessarily an easy spot.

Among the 10 fillies and mares entered in the grass race are multiple stakes winners Babae and Snow Dance. Watch, a graded winner coming off a solid allowance score here earlier in the month, and Suyra, who won the Grade 3 Royal Heroine in California in July, add to the competitiveness of the event.

Voodoo Dancer, trained by Christophe Clement, came flying at the finish of the 1 1/8-mile Diana and just missed. Clement's filly carried 120 pounds, three more than the winner, Tates Creek, and broke from outside post 9. Tates Creek came back and finished sixth and last in the Beverly D. last weekend at Arlington.

Clement said that, at level weights with Tates Creek, "My filly is a better filly." Voodoo Dancer, undefeated in four starts at the Ballston Spa distance, is the 120-pound highweight and gives three to seven pounds to her rivals. Jose Santos rides Voodoo Dancer, who drew the rail.

Snow Dance, third in the Diana, won the Lake Placid here last year. John Ward, Snow Dance's trainer, said the filly, who has early speed, is learning to relax a bit. In the Diana, Snow Dance pressed the pacesetter, Babae, and then came on again after dropping back to fourth in the stretch.

"I think she'll be close up," Ward said, but noting that Snow Dance's jockey, Pat Day, "will probably moderate the pace a bit. She closed last time, and it's finally getting through to her she can wait a little bit and make a run."

- additional reporting by Karen M. Johnson

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