07/26/2001 12:00AM

'Galaxy' a fast filly on the rise


VANCOUVER, British Columbia - Galaxy Belle, who was claimed for $4,000 just over a month ago, figures to be the one to catch in a $20,000 claiming sprint for older fillies and mares that drew eight horses at Hastings Park on Saturday.

Roy Rawson claimed Galaxy Belle on behalf of Nick MacDonald, and she has won each of her two starts since by more than six lengths. Rawson was attracted to Galaxy Belle because of her speed and pedigree.

"I trained her mother [Pez's Pride], and like Galaxy Belle she was a bit of a head case," said Rawson.

He figured if he could settle down Galaxy Belle, she might be able to reproduce her 3-year-old form, when she was good enough to win for $15,000.

"She's a terrible stall-walker, so I put her in a pony stall, which is smaller, and I also built a tiny window in it," Rawson said. "It seems to have done the trick, but this looks like a pretty tough spot Saturday."

David Wilson rides Galaxy Belle.

Mark Patzer was aboard for Galaxy Belle's two recent wins, but on Saturday he's opted to ride the likely favorite, Coastal Baby. A 6-year-old daughter of Olympio, Coastal Baby finished third to Full Scream Ahead in a $25,000 sprint July 18.

Usually reliable - she has hit the board in 23 of her 26 starts - Coastal Baby was claimed for $20,000 out of a win at 1 1/16 miles on June 20 by Westwood Thoroughbreds and is trained by Terry Jordan.

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