05/29/2007 11:00PM

Dreaming of Anna switches to turf


CHICAGO - Before Dreaming of Anna actually launched what so far has been a disappointing 2007 campaign, her connections mentioned the Breeders' Cup Mile as a potential ultimate goal for the season. Who knows if Dreaming of Anna will turn out to be good enough for a spot that ambitious, but beginning Saturday at Arlington, last year's champion 2-year-old filly is back on the turf.

Dreaming of Anna, who faded to sixth after setting the pace in the May 4 Kentucky Oaks, was one of 10 horses entered on Wednesday in the Double Delta, one of two overnight stakes carded for Saturday's Arlington Park program. The Double Delta, carded for a mile on grass, offers a purse of about $45,000.

But the race could function as a launching pad for bigger things later in the summer. Dreaming of Anna never showed her best in a two-race Gulfstream Park campaign, and trainer Wayne Catalano felt she had just come back to life in April, which is why Dreaming of Anna was given a look in the Oaks. Dreaming of Anna might have run as well beating the good colt Marcavelly last fall in a Woodbine one-mile turf stakes as she did winning the BC Juvenile Fillies, and she should be a handful on Saturday.

Tom Archdeacon may pass Classic

Tom Archdeacon exited his mild upset in Monday's Awad Stakes for 3-year-old grass horses in good physical condition, but trainer Austin Smith isn't yet ready to commit to the June 23 Arlington Classic, the first in a three-race series of graded stakes for the 3-year-old turf set.

"He's nominated to a bunch of races, but that's logical, to let everybody come to you, not you go to them," said Smith, an Ohioan based at Arlington with 19 horses this summer. "The [Arlington Classic] is a little close, cause I've kind of jammed three races into him."

Tom Archdeacon finished second in a pair of good turf maiden races here last summer, but didn't race between September and April. Smith had the horse at Gulfstream, and Tom Archdeacon basically was ready to run there, but he wound up making his 2007 debut April 22 at Hawthorne, winning a maiden race. Tom Archdeacon closed strongly for second in a May 4 allowance race at Arlington, and won the Awad by making two moves, one to reach contention at the half-mile pole, the second an inside run to finish the job in the stretch.

Watch out for Now

Friday's featured ninth race, carded for about 1 1/16 miles on turf, is for open allowance horses without a stakes or open allowance win on grass, but it's heavy on Illinois-breds. Five of the eight entrants were bred in Illinois, making this a de facto prep for the Lincoln Heritage Handicap, part of the Prairie State Festival for Illinois-breds on July 7.

One of those Illinois-breds, Now, could offer a square price despite the presence of leading rider Rene Douglas. All Now has done is win her maiden and a pair of statebred-restricted allowance races, but Now's 2007 debut last month on the Arlington turf was impressive, and she may have more to offer in the months to come.