06/02/2010 11:00PM

Fatal Bullet tries two turns


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Fatal Bullet will experiment around two turns against an excellent field in the Grade 3, $150,000 Eclipse Stakes at Woodbine on Saturday. The 1 1/16-mile Polytrack race is Fatal Bullet's first race at longer than seven furlongs on the main track.

In his only start beyond a sprint distance, he finished ninth on turf in the Grade 3 Summer in 2007 in his third start.

Fatal Bullet was Canada's champion sprinter and Horse of the Year in 2008, the same year he ran second in the Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Sprint. He finished sixth in last year's Sprint at Santa Anita before going to the sidelines for six months.

Resurfacing May 9 in the Grade 3 Vigil Stakes, Fatal Bullet pressed the pace and finished second behind impressive front-running winner Hollywood Hit, who broke Woodbine's seven-furlong Polytrack record.

Trainer Reade Baker said he is unsure how Fatal Bullet will handle 1 1/16 miles.

"I've often wondered about it," Baker said. "I don't think we're going to hurt him by trying it. He's a very kind horse, and if we can get him to not waste himself early, who knows?"

Baker is taking the blinkers off Fatal Bullet and has replaced regular rider Eurico Da Silva with Gerry Olguin.

Mast Track, a quick California invader, drew outside Fatal Bullet in post 2, and they could link up on the lead. Mast Track's last victory came in the Grade 3 Native Diver Handicap on Hollywood's Cushion Track in December. He is making his first start for trainer Sean Smullen.

Ice Bear captured last year's Eclipse with a 100 Beyer Figure in his second start off the sidelines. Making his first start this year in the slow-paced allowance prep for the Eclipse, Ice Bear broke tardily and then awaited room at the eighth pole en route to a fourth-place finish.

Pool Play won the nine-furlong Durham Cup in October, and went on to finish third in the Autumn and Valedictory stakes. He was second in the May 14 Eclipse prep.

"The last race was crazy, because there was no speed and he was up close," trainer Mark Casse said. "Pool Play doesn't have a real quick turn of foot, and he needs the pace to soften up a little for him before he can kick on."