09/28/2005 11:00PM

El Don to get tested by Adreamisborn


SAN MATEO, Calif. - Trainer Marty Jones wouldn't mind if Saturday's $125,000 Grade 3 Bay Meadows Breeders' Cup Handicap were simply a rerun of the California Turf Championship.

The Jones-trained won that $100,000 turf race at one mile on the grass here, and Saturday's 1 1/8-mile turf race sets up the same way. Shadow Raider will probably take the lead again, and may not get much more early pressure than he did in the California Turf Championship on Labor Day. El Don will be sitting back and will make his move in the lane.

"That would be just fine with me," Jones said.

Saturday's race will be tougher, though, because of the presence of Shadow Raider's stablemate Adreamisborn.

A versatile 6-year-old gelding, won the $100,000 Joseph T. Grace at Santa Rosa in his last turf start, and won the Grade 3 Stanford Breeders' Cup Handicap and was a narrow second to Castledale in the Grade 2 San Francisco Breeders' Cup Handicap over the Bay Meadows turf last spring.

His style is similar to El Don's. He will sit back early and rally in the lane.

No horse in the field of six has won at this distance on the turf, but Adreamisborn should be able to handle it. He was fifth, beaten five lengths by Roses in May, last year at the distance in the Grade 2 Kentucky Cup Classic on the dirt.

El Don's lone start at the distance was an eighth-place finish in the Sunshine Millions Classic in January, but he's a much-improved runner, and is better on turf, where he has won both of his starts.

"I think he can make a mile and an eighth," Jones said. "He relaxes well and looks like he can get that far."

Owned and bred by Harris Farms and Donald Valpredo, El Don didn't make his first start on turf until two starts ago, a victory in an optional-claiming race at Del Mar. Jones jokes about how long it took him to run the 4-year-old gelding on grass, but El Don has made up for lost time.

"If you let him do his thing the first quarter or three-eighths, if you don't push him early, he'll do what you want," Jones said.

Adreamisborn was still a maiden last year at age 5 but has blossomed under trainer Jerry Hollendorfer's care.

Russell Baze, who rode El Don to victory in the California Turf Championship, stays with Adreamisborn here. The entry of Adreamisborn and Shadow Raider is favored at 6-5 on the track's morning line.

"Adreamisborn belongs in the race," Hollendorfer said. "This is a big jump up for Shadow Raider. We're running him off a good race and hoping he can repeat."

Kilgowan, Grafton, and Hatif complete the field.

, who may be sitting second down the backstretch, has trailed Adreamisborn in his past two starts and is winless on the turf.

Neither Grafton nor Hatif has won this year. Grafton, who adds blinkers Saturday, finished in front of Hatif, who takes the blinkers off, in their lone meeting this year.