10/10/2001 11:00PM

Drop will help 'Halory'


EAST BOSTON, Mass. - Valiant Halory has yet to find success outside the allowance ranks, but he will still be the favorite when he ships to Suffolk Downs for Saturday's $25,000 Topsider Stakes.

The Topsider will pit a field of 10 older horses at six furlongs. Valiant Halory gets in under 117 pounds and will be ridden by Taylor Hole.

Valiant Halory hasn't finished better than second in 10 starts this year but the change in company should work in his favor.

Last year, the Nick Zito-trained Valiant Halory had a record of 4-4-3 in 14 starts. He scored his maiden win early in the year, then registered three wins with conditioned allowance company. He also placed in the Grade 1 King's Bishop and was third in the Grade 2 Forest Hills Handicap at six furlongs while racking up earnings of $195,538.

This year has been a different story for the 4-year-old Valiant Halory. He finished second this spring in the Grade 2 Commonwealth Breeders' Cup at Keeneland and that was his best effort of the year. He was also second in an optional claimer at Pimlico and an allowance at Saratoga.

In his last start, a seven-furlong allowance at Belmont, Valiant Halory stumbled at the break then gained position along the inside before he tired in the stretch. He should benefit from the change of pace he will find in the Topsider.

The locally based horses entered for the Topsider offer no standout performer but they should ensure a lively pace and competitive race.

The lightly raced Goodbar has recorded half of his six lifetime wins at Suffolk, including last year's Brodkin on the turf. The 6-year-old Goodbar, owned and trained by Robert Gonsalves, comes into the Topsider off an upset win in Rockingham's Manchester Handicap in which he made a big run from well off the pace in his first start in five months.

First Shot was second to Goodbar in the Manchester, then came back to win an allowance in his final Rock appearance. The 4-year-old First Shot has a strong fondness for Suffolk's racing strip, where he has scored four of his six career wins.

Binnifactor is one of the fastest horses in New England and he will make his first start since moving into trainer Jay Bernardini's barn. He was second in First Shot's allowance win last out and before that was a tired fifth to Goodbar in the Manchester after a troubled start.

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