07/09/2001 11:00PM

For Elise the real deal for red-hot Stall


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - It was Bright Valour on Saturday and Discreet Hero on Sunday. After sweeping the weekend stakes at Arlington, trainer Al Stall has a good shot at Thursday's feature. For Elise, already a standout winner at this meet, faces five other 3-year-old fillies in a second-level, six-furlong allowance race.

The most accomplished of them is Sams Tune, who just finished second to the good filly Hattiesburg in the June 24 Ribbon Stakes. Also entered are Prairie Smoke, who lost to Hattiesburg at Prairie Meadows in her last race; the Louie Roussel-trained Heart of a Chief, third in the Ribbon; Bullish Miss; and Time Is Money.

Stall is on a roll and For Elise has ability, speed, and a favorable outside draw. She is not yet in the class of Bright Valour, who won the Grade 3 Hanshin, or Discreet Hero, a 3-year-old who easily won the Alydar, but For Elise, 2 for 2 in her career, has not yet hit her ceiling.

By the young sire Dumaani, For Elise is owned by Michale Rainier. After flashing ability in a Fair Grounds training race this winter, For Elise made her debut there, winning a turf sprint by a diminishing neck. For Elise needed some time following her debut but resumed breezing in May, and after a strong gate workout June 11 at Arlington, Stall felt For Elise was about ready to go.

He was right. In a June 20 dirt sprint, the filly showed high gate speed, galloped to an easy lead and was ridden out to the wire, running six furlongs in a snappy 1:10.38. Unlike in her debut, For Elise wore front wraps, but Stall said they were used to protect her from striking herself with her rear hooves, not because of leg problems.

With her early speed, For Elise drew well in post 6, where she can track the speedy pair of Bullish Miss and Heart of a Chief. Jesse Campbell, who rode regularly for Stall last year, has a return call on For Elise.

Sams Tune may have more trouble working out a trip from post 2. Sams Tune has tactical speed and will either have to hope for an inside hole to open, or wait and go around the speed on the turn. Which is not to eliminate her from contention. Trained by Gene Cilio, Sams Tune has won two of six starts, finished worse than third only once, and before running into Hattiesburg last month, caught a very tough allowance group at Churchill Downs. Ray Sibille, aboard for the filly's debut win here last summer, rides Sams Tune.