01/30/2007 1:00AM

Dreaming of Anna near return


BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. - While Street Sense, the winner of the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, is still weeks away from his first start of the year, the time is drawing closer for Dreaming of Anna, a fellow Eclipse Award champion and the winner of the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. Dreaming of Anna, who like Street Sense is based this winter here at the Palm Meadows training center, is now scheduled to make her 2007 debut at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 10, trainer Wayne Catalano said Tuesday morning.

Gulfstream has a pair of races that day for 3-year-old fillies, the Grade 3 Old Hat at 6 1/2 furlongs and the Grade 2 Davona Dale at one mile. Both are worth $150,000.

"The perfect race would be a turf race at seven furlongs or a mile, but they don't have that," Catalano said. "There's not a lot of options. I was looking at the races in California, but the purses aren't good enough to ship that far."

The unbeaten Dreaming of Anna was ridden last year by Rene Douglas, who is scheduled to return to action this week after being banned from riding for six weeks at Calder Race Course and then Gulfstream. No reason has ever been publicly stated for his banishment, although Gulfstream president Bill Murphy cited an investigation by the Thoroughbred Racing and Protective Bureau when he cleared Douglas to ride at Gulfstream last week. But the absence has left the mount on Dreaming of Anna in question.

"I love Rene Douglas," Frank Calabrese, the owner and breeder of Dreaming of Anna, said while feeding the filly slices of green apples Tuesday morning. "He's my favorite rider. But I've got to see what kind of shape he's in. It was a bad rap. It's the kind of thing that might affect anyone mentally. I just want to see if he handles it with the same class he always has.

"He's a super human being. If he's in shape, he'll ride. And if he's not, I think he's the kind of guy who will come to me and say 'You need to go in a different direction.' "

Catalano and Calabrese bicker like an old married couple. On Tuesday, Calabrese glanced over at Catalano and said, "I really want to race her in the Derby, but I'm getting opposition."

Calabrese, still looking at Catalano, smiled and added, only half-joking, "I want to win the Derby, Preakness, and Belmont, and if you can't, I'll put her with a trainer who will."

Sir Greeley sizzles in prep

Sir Greeley, preparing for the Grade 3, $100,000 Deputy Minister Handicap on Saturday at Gulfstream Park, worked three furlongs in 34 seconds on Tuesday morning at Palm Meadows, the best time of 16 at the distance.

His rivals in the 6 1/2-furlong race are expected to include High Finance, Kelly's Landing, Paradise Dancer, and Yes Yes Yes.

The Deputy Minister is one of the supporting features on a card that is topped by the Grade 1 Donn Handicap for older horses, and the Grade 3 Holy Bull Stakes and Grade 2 Swale Stakes for 3-year-olds.

The Donn will be headed by Invasor, who last week was named the 2006 Horse of the Year. His challengers include Hesanoldsalt, who was disqualified from a victory at Gulfstream earlier in the meeting in a money allowance race.

How does his trainer, Nick Zito, feel about going up against the Horse of the Year?

"I feel good," Zito said. "I don't know how Hesanoldsalt feels, but I feel good. I didn't ask Hesanoldsalt yet."

Joint Effort may head back to California

Joint Effort and her trainer, Dale Romans, both enjoyed Santa Anita so much last Saturday when she won the Sunshine Millions Distaff that they may return for the Grade 1 Santa Margarita Handicap on March 10, Romans said at Palm Meadows on Tuesday morning.

"She liked it out there," Romans said. "Her and I both liked it. It was crystal clear with the mountains."

Romans said Bright One, who burst on the scene last summer with victories that included the West Virginia Derby, has just started serious training after being given time off following the Clark Handicap at Churchill Downs two months ago. Bright One worked Monday at Palm Meadows.

"I don't have a game plan for him yet," Romans said. "He didn't run any good at all in the Clark. We didn't find anything wrong, so we just gave him time."