04/26/2006 12:00AM

Devons Smokin staying with Calvario


AUBURN, Wash. - Trainer Manny Calvario was all smiles at his barn Monday morning. Calvario was still basking in the afterglow of Devons Smokin's sharp score in Sunday's U. S. Bank Stakes, for one thing. For another, he had just talked to Devons Smokin's California trainer, Jeff Bonde.

"Jeff said he wants me to keep the horse here and try to find another race for her," said Calvario. "I'm happy to do that. I think I can have some fun with her here."

Finding another race for Devons Smokin, a 3-year-old daughter of Devon Lane, won't be a problem. The 6 1/2-furlong Federal Way Handicap is coming up May 21, and there is no question the race will fill. Having fun with Devons Smokin shouldn't be a problem, either, if she runs the way she did Sunday.

Despite breaking a step slowly under jockey Julio Felix, Devons Smokin recovered quickly to be within a length of the pacesetting Forty Colors after a quarter-mile in 22.60. She moved to take command after a half-mile in 46, opened a two-length lead with a furlong remaining, and held off the late charge of Chestnut Lady to prevail by 1 1/2 lengths in 1:10.20 for six furlongs. Wild R.N finished third in the field of 11, Forty Colors finished fourth, and Too Cute to Boot edged Sendipity for fourth.

Sendipity, a maiden who is also trained by Calvario, finished fast after getting away very slowly and trailing the field early.

"I really think she would have been right there if she had broken out of the gate cleanly," said Calvario. "I was happy with the way she ran."

Calvario is campaigning at Emerald Downs for the first time this year, though he shipped Fast Parade here last season to win the Captain Condo Stakes. He trained in northern California for the previous 10 years, and before that he was an assistant to northern California trainer Damon Pollard. Calvario moved his 12-horse stable here a couple of weeks before the meeting began, and he said he has had no cause to regret that decision.

"So far, I like Emerald Downs a lot," he said. "I've started four horses here and won two stakes, so what's not to like?"

Raise the Bluff impressive in prep

Prepping for the six-furlong Auburn Stakes on May 7, Raise the Bluff dug in to score by a neck over My Friend Luis in Friday's opening day feature, a 5 1/2-furlong allowance dash for 3-year-olds. Off at 1-2, Raise the Bluff finished in 1:03.40 under Nate Chaves.

Junior Coffey, who trains Raise the Bluff for Ron Crockett Inc., said he hopes the prep will give Raise the Bluff an edge in the Auburn.

"It will be a little quick back - 16 days, I guess - but I think it was worth it to get a race into him," said Coffey. "It seemed like horses who had been racing had an advantage through the opening weekend, and I hope Raise the Bluff will have an advantage over the ones who will be making their first start of the year in the Auburn."

Since Raise the Bluff was mainly prepping in the opening day feature, it came as a bonus that he also won. Coffey, however, said it didn't feel that way.

"It was a lot of pressure," he said. "I would have hated to lose at 1-2."

Lavanway high on his white horses

Until 1999, The Jockey Club had registered only nine Thoroughbreds as white in 107 years. That year, however, three white Thoroughbreds were foaled at Dalene Knight's Painted Desert Farm near Redmond, Ore., and Knight has bred at least two white Thoroughbreds in each succeeding year.

Three of the white Thorough-breds, plus a white mixed -breed horse, currently reside at trainer Dayson Lavanway's barn at Emerald Downs.

"The mixed breed horse is my pony, Arctic Dash," said Lavanway. "He is half Quarter Horse. The other three are Thoroughbreds, and I hope to run all of them here."

One of the white Thoroughbreds, the 5-year-old Allamystique, was a maiden winner at Portland Meadows in 2004. The other two are unraced.

"One is a 3-year-old colt by Airdrie Apache, who is the sire of almost all of the white horses that Dalene has bred," said Lavanway. "The other is a 2-year-old filly who is out of an Airdrie Apache mare, Snow Baby Go, but she is by Rob 'n Gin, who is a dark bay or brown horse. It just shows you how strong Airdrie Apache's genes are, because this filly is pure white."

But can she run?

"I think both the colt and the filly have ability," said Lavanway. "I especially like the filly. She is a nice, big filly, and she is so intelligent that I was able to break her in two weeks. My money is on her."

Lavanway will likely get a good price, because the white horses who have run here in the past, Arctic White and Allamystique, haven't been competitive.

"I think that was because they had to run over their heads," said Lavanway. "These white horses are worth quite a bit, but their value derives from their color, not their racing ability. The other white horses needed to run for a claiming price, but they were too valuable. I'm hoping the young white horses that I have will be good enough to compete with maiden special weight company. As for Allamystique, he is older now and he has gotten some dark spots in his coat. He isn't as valuable as the others, so I'll run him for a claiming price."