09/22/2012 1:46PM

Delaware Park: Silverest may be vulnerable on Monday


Silverest began her career by losing 18 consecutive races over a span of three seasons. Since mid-July, however, the 4-year-old Silverest has put together a three-race winning streak, which gives her more wins on the main track than the combined records of the five other fillies she faces in Monday’s featured seventh race at Delaware Park.

Despite her seeming advantage in a field where the others are a collective 3 for 18 on dirt, Silverest may be a shaky proposition in a first-level optional $20,000 claimer at a mile and 70 yards.

Silverest, trained by Peter Wasiluk, has been facing decidedly weaker competition. Her initial two victories came against $10,000 maiden claimers and $20,000 nonwinners-of-two claimers. Most recently, she shipped to Parx to win a $16,000 starter allowance over a sloppy track. Her best Beyer Speed Figure, a 66, is far below the par of 79 for the level of Monday’s race.

In addition, Silverest must concede from three to nine pounds to her rivals as the 124-pound highweight.

Two of the lighter-weighted fillies in the field, Debonair Dancer and Onepointhreekarats, may be viable alternatives to Silverest.

Debonair Dancer is 0 for 2 on the main track and is being asked to stretch out from 5 1/2 furlongs. The most significant statistic, however, may be trainer Nick Canani’s record with horses first time off the claim switching from sprints to routes. In that category, Canani shows a 5-for-17 record (29 percent). He took Debonair Dancer for $20,000 out of a second-place finish in a turf sprint at Saratoga a month ago.

Onepointhreekarats is also switching surfaces. Her last five starts have come on turf or synthetic tracks, and she is 0 for 2 on dirt. She was given some time off after finishing last of 10 going 1 1/16 miles on grass at Saratoga. It’s noteworthy that trainer Graham Motion is 6 for 17 (35 percent) with horses switching from turf to dirt following a layoff of 31 to 60 days the past two seasons.

The last time she raced on dirt, in early March at Gulfstream, the 4-year-old Onepointreekarats earned a 70 Beyer for her runner-up finish against maidens. That number looks pretty good in Monday’s lineup.

Silentiary, the only horse entered for the $20,000 claiming price, is the lone runner in the field besides Silverest with more than one victory. Of her three wins, the only one that came on the main track occurred going a one-turn mile over a muddy track at Laurel last October.