09/20/2006 11:00PM

Ezra confident his filly won't lose


FORT ERIE, Ontario - The $30,000 Turf Writers Cup on Saturday will be a one-horse race, said trainer Daryl Ezra in a trash-talking mode.

"My horse won't get beat," said Ezra of Grab the Cat, a likely odds-on favorite in the mile and 70-yard contest for fillies and mares.

"Fast track, sloppy track - it doesn't matter. There's nothing in there better than me. She can go to the front or she can come off the pace."

After winning four straight races, Grab the Cat finished second in the six-furlong Longshot OTB Cup here Sept. 9. She will face five rivals Saturday, including Windinthevalley, a Stacey Cooper trainee who won the 1 1/16-mile Centre Stage Anne Cup here Sept. 4.

Grab the Cat, said Ezra, "is not really a sprinter. But she came out of her last race real good. She is ready to roll."

Ezra, who doubles as Fort Erie's race-caller, pointed out that Grab the Cat has twice earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 84 going long. "You have to add up some of the other horses' numbers to get an 84," he said.

Ezra admits he would be crushed if his runner failed. He noted that Grab the Cat is running at her favorite distance and that she has drawn well, getting post 4.

Ezra said that Grab the Cat had been pointed to the Turf Writers since the Aug. 12 Golden Horseshoe, and that the Longshot OTB Cup "wasn't going to hurt her. We hoped we could win it, but this was the target race."

Nick Mileni Jr., who along with Cooper owns Windinthevalley, concedes that Grab the Cat is the horse to beat.

"Grab the Cat has all the speed," said Mileni. "I hope somebody will go with her. If not, we will just have to track and hope to get by her."

Windinthevalley, Mileni noted, "doesn't give up."

Windinthevalley's Beyer Figure of 64 for the Centre Stage Anne was not flashy. Mileni, however, pointed out that it was a key race.

"Three of them in the race came back and won," said Mileni. "Marden Hill, who ran second to us, went and won a Cup race," - the Coca Cola Cup on Sept. 16 - "and Jet Engine and Spunky Bottoms have won."

Valentine's Mist, owned and trained by Raymond Pion, could make her presence felt Saturday. She defeated Windinthevalley in July.

Rob King Jr., who scored a hat trick on Tuesday, rides Valentine's Mist. Neil Poznansky will ride Grab the Cat, and Chad Beckon will be aboard Windinthevalley.