10/08/2003 11:00PM

Fort Erie notes


FORT ERIE, Ontario - In last Sunday's allowance feature, Red Dragon, an 8-year-old gelding, scored his ninth win in 19 starts at Fort Erie, all of them since he left western Canada in 2000 as a winner of two races.

Looking for a runner that might go long, trainer Daryl Ezra claimed Red Dragon for his brother, Maury, for $5,000 in his Eastern debut. Red Dragon, a son of Parlay Me, has won eight races for the Ezras, most of them at low claiming levels.

Parlay Me is also the sire of Parose, who won last Saturday's Grade 3 Durham Cup at Woodbine. Parose, a 9-year-old gelding and a winner of 19 of 82 lifetime starts, has earned $940,654, and has won 9 of 23 starts at Woodbine.

Parose and Red Dragon, both Alberta-breds, are the only known offspring of Parlay Me to be racing on the Ontario circuit. Parlay Me finished seventh in the 1987 Breeders' Cup Juvenile.

Standing in Onoway, Alberta, for a fee of $1,000, Parlay Me has a few runners in Alberta and the odd one in British Columbia, says Maury Ezra, who researched the stallion in the hopes of finding another nugget.

"The other Parlay Mes are not overwhelming," said Ezra. "Parose is faraway the best. Maybe they don't like the tight turns of the bullrings. And they might like the mile ovals here."

Hoping to capitalize on the research, Ezra made a swap with Ron Kirchner, who owns Parlay Me and is in breeding as a sideline. Ezra shipped two broodmares and two foals in exchange for two 2-year-olds by Parlay Me. The deal includes another runner for Ezra in the future.

One of the offspring has since died because of colic and the other, Sargent Rite, has been put away until next year. He wasn't mature enough to race this year, said Ezra.

Fast track plays role in record

Dart for Dough, a 5-year-old gelding, set a track record of 56.50 seconds for five furlongs at Fort Erie Monday. The old mark was 56.60, set by Cool Shot in 1995.

Dart for Dough ran the half in 44.75 on his way to a 6 1/2-length victory.

Said jockey Rui Pimentel, who was aboard the Vito Armata-trained Dart for Dough: "To be honest, I was wrapping him up five jumps from the wire because he had it wrapped up by that point."

The track record is more a reflection of the surface playing fast than it is of outstanding talent.

Dart for Dough was running with a $9,000 claiming tag in a non-winners of three race. He was winless in his previous six starts in 2003, the last one at the $7,500 level.

Another example of an extra-fast surface here was on Sept. 22, when Vany's Forum shipped down from Woodbine and won a 1 1/16-mile optional claimer in 1:42.42.

If Vany's Forum had gone .03 faster, he would have equaled the track record for the distance, set by Chatty Cavalier 32 years ago. Finishing second behind Vany's Forum, just 2 1/4 lengths behind, was Neartic Ice, who is winless in 11 starts this year.

In his next start, which came at Woodbine Wednesday night for a $75,000 tag, Vany's Forum finished last of seven in an optional claimer at 1 1/8 miles.

Quong relocating to Woodbine

Fort Erie jockey Mike Quong, who broke a leg during a spill here Aug. 17, has relocated to Woodbine.

"I'll be riding next week at Woodbine," said Quong. "There's only four weeks left here, and the good horses I had [here] have won with other guys on them. The ones I'd get back are the ones that aren't running any good."