08/11/2005 11:00PM

Deputy G stays home for Ellis Juvenile

Deputy G (center) wins the July 10 Bashford Manor at Churchill Downs.

When a 2-year-old is good enough to win the Bashford Manor Stakes, as Deputy G did at Churchill Downs on July 10, the next logical move often is Saratoga.

Instead, Deputy G will turn up next at Ellis Park in Henderson, Ky. "We thought about Saratoga," said David Pate, who trains Deputy G for Spade Stable, a 19-member syndicate based in Louisville. "But not a lot of the owners wanted to do that. They're Kentucky people, and they want to keep the horse running where everyone can go and see him."

As such, Deputy G figures to be a huge favorite when he runs in the Aug. 20 James C. Ellis Juvenile, one of four stakes on what will be the richest day of action in the 83-year history of Ellis Park.

Pate, 62, said if Deputy G comes out of the $75,000 Juvenile in good shape, he would run next in the Sept. 17 Kentucky Cup Juvenile at Turfway Park and the Oct. 8 Lane's End Breeders' Futurity at Keeneland.

Deputy G won a maiden race at Churchill in May before winning the Bashford Manor as the favorite in his lone subsequent start. He then went straight to Ellis with Pate's 20-horse stable and has flourished since then, according to Pate.

"He's coming into this race at Ellis better than he did the Bashford Manor," said Pate. "He is doing absolutely fantastic. He's bigger and stronger and is really maturing into a nice horse."

Jesus Castanon, the leading rider at Ellis, will have the mount in the seven-furlong Juvenile.

Deputy G, by Matty G, was the subject of several high-dollar offers from bloodstock agents following both of his Churchill wins, but Pate said the owners are "having too much fun" to seriously consider selling at this point.

Gardenia led by Dream of Summer

The highlight of the Saturday card is the Grade 3, $150,000 Gardenia Handicap, the lone graded race of the Ellis meet. Racing secretary Doug Bredar said the top prospects for the 1 1/8-mile race are Dream of Summer from California and Pampered Princess from Florida.

Weight assignments for the Gardenia were due for release Saturday.

The Saturday co-feature is the $100,000 Ellis Park Breeders' Cup Turf, a 1 1/16-mile turf race for fillies and mares. Shaconage, a multiple graded winner based at Churchill, looks like the one to beat.

In the two other stakes, both for 2-year-olds, Deputy G figures to limit the field size for the Ellis Juvenile. Likewise, Swept Gold, a filly trained by Steve Flint, figures to limit the field size for the $75,000 Anna M. Fisher Debutante.

Track raffles off 10 scholarships

The sixth annual College Scholarship Day raffle last Sunday at Ellis drew more than 750 entries. "The scholarship days just continue to grow and grow," said David Schneck, a local representative for the Kentucky Thoroughbred Association, which sponsors the giveaways at Kentucky's four major tracks.

Ten $1,000 scholarships were raffled off Sunday, with one reserved for a person with a racetrack affiliation. That scholarship was won by mutuel clerk Kassi Brown.

* A 10-race Sunday card at Ellis is highlighted by the Judge TC, an overnight race with a purse of $29,750. The 1 1/8-mile turf race is for older horses.