09/08/2007 12:00AM

Dreaming of Anna too quick for her rivals


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - Okay - now that was the Dreaming of Anna from last year.

Whatever kinks might have been in her system earlier this season, Dreaming of Anna and trainer Wayne Catalano have ironed them out. Showing the form that made her a champion filly last year at 2, Dreaming of Anna wowed the Saturday crowd at Arlington with a powerhouse 4 1/4-quarter-length win in the Grade 3, $200,000 Pucker Up Stakes.

Breaking like a Quarter Horse under jockey E.T. Baird, Dreaming of Anna set a swift pace in the nine-furlong Pucker Up, but simply breezed away from her rivals in the stretch. Despite setting fast fractions of 23.31 seconds for her opening quarter-mile and 47.34 for her half, Dreaming of Anna still came home her final furlong in less than 12 seconds - and looked awesome doing it.

"There were no gimmes there," Baird said. "That was just pure her. I didn't rate her - I just let her run her own race. She just picked it up when they turned for home."

Dreaming of Anna, bred and owned by Frank Calabrese, won her third race in a row, and now has captured 7 of 10 starts in an already excellent career.

"It's a thrill riding her," Baird said.

Fittingly, Dreaming of Anna's win gave trainer Wayne Catalano 70 for this meet, eclipsing the record he set here two years ago.

German invader Touch My Soul was a distant second, with Bel Air Beauty edging Lemonline for third. Dreaming of Anna ($4.60) ran 1 1/8 miles on grass in 1:48.20, just off the stakes record.

Matron: Longshots run one-two

In the wild new world of Polytrack, anything goes.

The two longest prices on the board finished one-two in the Arlington Matron, with 16-1 Solo Survivor leading home the longshot parade. She rallied up the rail under Mark Guidry and beat 10-1 Ms. Lydonia by one length, with 8-5 favorite Round Heels third.

Solo Survivor had never won a stakes race, captured one race from 11 starts during 2006, and was coming out of a $50,000 claiming race. But Guidry picked up the mount after Julien Leparoux had been named, and there is something about Guidry and the Matron. He won it two years ago with Indy Groove, and won it last year with Sea Siren, and on Saturday skimmed the fence and got plenty of late run out of Solo Survivor.

"I'm glad Leparoux didn't come," Guidry said.

Solo Survivor is owned by Richard Glantz and trained by Jim DiVito, who won the Arlington Sprint Handicap last weekend. Though she won her recent claiming start, she had regularly been drummed by horses of the quality she faced Saturday. But Solo Survivor was the right horse for the moment, turning in a career-best performance to outfinish Ms. Lydonia, who battled bravely after setting the early pace.

Solo Survivor paid $34.60 to win, and was timed in 1:49.94 for 1 1/8 miles on Polytrack.

* It was a dream day for Calabrese, Catalano, and Baird. About a half-hour after Dreaming of Anna captured the Pucker Up, another Calabrese home-bred, Dreaming of Liz, won the Arlington-Washington Lassie over longshots Rasierra and Minewander. Dreaming of Liz, the favorite, led all the way, and paid $5 to win.