07/30/2010 2:43PM

Get Serious gets relief in Oceanport


OCEANPORT, N.J. − After a bid for Grade 1 glory in the United Nations Stakes, Get Serious finds himself in a more realistic spot Sunday in the Grade 3, $200,000 Oceanport Stakes at Monmouth Park.

A 1 1/8-mile race, the Oceanport tops the Haskell Day undercard and will be part of a live, one-hour telecast on ABC that begins at 5 p.m. The 11th race on the 14-race card, the Oceanport kicks off a $250,000 guaranteed pick four, which includes the Haskell.

John Forbes, who trains Get Serious, said the United Nations was a gamble worth taking. A 6-year-old New York-bred gelding, Get Serious kicked off the 2010 campaign with a pair of victories, including one in the Grade 3 Monmouth Stakes.

The U.N. on July 3 was the next target on the local stakes calendar. After mulling the idea, Forbes opted to go for the biggest turf prize at the meet. The arguments in favor of the U.N. made sense: Get Serious was in top form, and no shipping was involved.

As usual, Get Serious was on the lead in the U.N, a 1 3/8-mile race. He never got a breather, facing continuous pressure while going longer than he ever had in his career. He was still clinging to the lead turning for home but finished fifth, beaten 3 1/4 lengths.

“The mile and three-eighths was worth a try,” Forbes said. “I swore I wouldn’t try it, and then I did it, anyway. I certainly wouldn’t have shipped to do it. Then there was a horse on him the whole way. I didn’t think he ran so bad, and he came out of it well.”

The U.N. was also Get Serious’s third race in five weeks. He has had time to regroup and lands in a more forgiving spot on this course, where he is 8 for 11.

“He’s had a rest,” Forbes said. “He’s trained super.”

The Oceanport drew eight runners, with four cross entered in the Fourstardave Stakes the same afternoon at Saratoga.

Trainer Patrick Biancone entered Violon Sacre and Nownownow in both races, but he said Saturdaythat he will run both Violon Sacre, the Battlefield Stakes winner here, and Nownownow in the Oceanport.

Cherokee Artist and Whatsthescript are the other two cross entrants.

Strike A Deal, Roman Tiger, and Tybalt are also committed to the Oceanport.