08/02/2001 11:00PM

Diverse group represents Empire State at F-T


Eleven New York-breds are among 237 yearlings cataloged in Fasig-Tipton's select sale on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday at the Humphrey S. Finney pavilion in Saratoga Springs, N.Y.

The New York-breds - six colts and five fillies - represent a diverse group of sires.

State-bred yearlings by established sires Dixieland Band (Hip No. 8), Holy Bull (Hip No. 90), Polish Numbers (Hip No. 42), and Silver Deputy (Hip No. 205) are among the lots for the sale.

Unbridled's Song, a hot freshman sire last year and currently among the leading second-crop sires, has a filly (Hip No. 213) in the sale. A New York-bred yearling colt by Unbridled's Song made a splash at Keeneland's select sale in July when he sold for $625,000.

New York stallion A. P Jet (Hip. No. 141), whose first foals are also 3-year-olds this year, got off to a rousing start as a freshman sire and has kept the momentum going this year.

Young sires Deputy Commander (Hip Nos. 67 and 181), Grand Slam (Hip No. 39), and Tomorrows Cat (Hip No. 137) introduce their first crop of yearlings at the select sale.

Five New York-breds sold at last year's select sale, including a Silver Deputy filly who brought $1.25 million, smashing the old record of $900,000 for a New York-bred yearling sold at auction and establishing a record for the highest-priced New York-bred filly or mare to fall under the hammer.

Consignors of New York-breds have done well with a limited amount of state-breds offered at this summer's yearling sales in Kentucky. The $625,000 Unbridled's Song colt was the only New York-bred to sell in Keeneland's select sale. At Fasig-Tipton's select auction, four of the seven New York-breds to go through the ring were sold. The other three did not meet their reserve price.

The four yearlings sold averaged $148,500 at the two-day sale, where a record-breaking average of $97,671 for 237 yearlings sold was established

The New York-bred sale topper was a $220,000 Saint Ballado colt, consigned by the late Jerry Brody's Gallagher Stud, with Denali Stud acting as agent.

Next Sunday, 132 registered New York-breds are among the 141 cataloged yearlings at Fasig-Tipton's preferred one-day sale in Saratoga.

Say Florida Sandy: Number two with a bullet

If he continues his winning ways, Say Florida Sandy, a son of Personal Flag, could become the all-time leading New York-bred in money won this fall.

With his win as the heavy favorite in last Saturday's $200,000 Philadelphia Park Breeders' Cup Handicap, Say Florida Sandy became the all-time leading New York-bred in number of stakes wins (17), a record previously held by the retired Lottsa Talc, a winner of 16 stakes.

Say Florida Sandy, a 7-year-old owned by John Rotella and trained by Juan Serey, earned $120,000 for his latest win, bringing his total earnings to $1,647,926. The win bumped him up from fifth position among the all-time New York-bred money earners to the second spot behind L'Carriere ($1,726,175). Say Florida Sandy needs $78,250 in earnings to vault him into first place.

Rotella said he has selected a schedule that won't tax his horse too much before his ultimate goal for Say Florida Sandy, the $1 million Breeders' Cup Sprint at Belmont Park on Oct. 27.

Rather than point him to the $250,000 Forego, a Grade 1 at Saratoga on Sept. 1, which usually comes up a tough race, Rotella has picked two seemingly easier assignments for Say Florida Sandy - the $75,000-added Gen. Douglas MacArthur Handicap against New York-breds on Sept. 7, opening day of Belmont's fall meet, and Delaware Park's $100,000 Wilmington Handicap on Sept. 29, a final prep before the Breeders' Cup.

"That's my plan because I want two easy races for him before the Breeders' Cup," Rotella said. "I want to keep his head right. He was supposed to win the Philly race and he did it pretty easy."

o An unraced half-brother to Say Florida Sandy, Say Cousin Lenny, is in training with Bobby Triola at Belmont Park. Say Cousin Lenny, a 2-year-old, was bred and is owned by Sandy Bacon, the breeder of Say Florida Sandy. Bacon still owns the dam of Say Florida Sandy and Say Cousin Lenny, Lolli Lucka Lolli.

Say Cousin Lenny, a son of Smart Strike, is among the 35 nominees to the $60,000 Aspirant Stakes for New York-breds at Finger Lakes on Aug. 18.