08/26/2007 11:00PM

Gilchrist runners find success early in meet


SAN MATEO, Calif. - Trainer Greg Gilchrist made trips to the winner's circle the first three days of the Bay Meadows meeting - Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday - and the three runners he met there could make a habit of posing for pictures.

Two were first-time starters, the 2-year-olds Indyanne and Fort Funston. The third was Victorina, who edged Vaca City Flyer in the final strides of a 5 1/2-furlong sprint Friday to record her ninth victory in 16 starts. All three were ridden by Russell Baze, who Sunday was suspended for 15 calendar days and fined $2,500 by the Bay Meadows stewards for whipping a horse who broke down Thursday.

Victorina had to work the hardest of the three, beating Vaca City Flyer by a nose. Both are multiple stakes winners.

"There's no give in her and no give in the other one," Baze said. "At the sixteenth pole, I wasn't sure I'd get there, but she really dug in."

The other two wins were much easier.

Indyanne, a $375,000 purchase, went wire to wire by 10 lengths Wednesday, running six furlongs in 1:09.60. Her job was made easier when her two primary rivals, Christmas Ship and Miss Sought After, both scratched.

Fort Funston, a $110,000 purchase, broke sharply from the rail in his race Thursday, winning by seven lengths in 1:10.92 for six furlongs.

"That should tell you something about the filly," Gilchrist said, referring to the comparative clockings between the two maiden winners. "She's as good [a filly] as I've trained at this point in time. She's very talented."

Gilchrist has trained some nice fillies, including Breeders' Cup Sprint runner-up Soviet Problems.

Baze also was very impressed by Indyanne.

"I hope Greg's as excited as I am," he said. "Right from the get-go, she's been impressive. She has a good way of moving and a good mind on her. If you ask, she runs. If you let up, she relaxes. She'll go as far or as short as you want."

Gilchrist said he may bring Indyanne back in the Bay Meadows Debutante on Sept. 8.

Fort Funston, Gilchrist said, "surprised me a little bit."

"I was just surprised he broke as sharp and ran as well as he did," he said. "He handled that field pretty well, but with that horse, we may wait for the first [allowance] condition."

Bay Meadow's turf suits Jack's Wild

Both jockey Brice Blanc and trainer Jorge Gutierrez thought Jack's Wild would do well in Saturday's California Turf Championship when they saw the turf condition. Although listed as firm, the turf here is thicker and a bit softer than the Southern California turf courses on which Jack's Wild had been racing.

Jack's Wild proved both correct, sitting in last place to the quarter pole before unleashing a strong run to win the one-mile statebred race by 1 1/2 lengths over Epic Power, who edged Now Victory for second.

Gutierrez said he would likely bring Jack's Wild back Sept. 22 for the Grade 3 $150,000 Bay Meadows Breeders' Cup Handicap at 1 1/8 miles on the turf.

Trainer Bill Morey said he passed Saturday's race with Bold Chieftain, who won the California Dreamin' at Del Mar on Aug. 3, because he didn't want to run him off another three-week layoff as he did at Del Mar. He said Bold Chieftain is being pointed to the Bay Meadows Breeders' Cup.

Kaenel returning from injury

Kyle Kaenel returns to action Wednesday for the first time since suffering a neck injury in a June 21 spill at Stockton. The 19-year-old has been in the top 10 in the rider standings since arriving in Northern California last year.

He rides Valid Intent in a $12,500 claimer in Wednesday's sixth race. He also has three mounts Thursday and one Friday.

He suffered two compression fractures in his neck when a horse broke down in front of him and his horse could not avoid the fallen rival. He was thrown from his mount and landed on his neck.

Morey sends two in starter

Shes a Lucky Wager, runner-up in the Wine Country Juvenile for Morey after being claimed for $25,000 from a maiden victory, and Papa'ssarahlin, claimed by Morey for $25,000 from a maiden victory in her last start, are among the seven runners in Wednesday's Bay Meadows feature, a 5 1/2-furlong $40,000 starter allowance for 2-year-old fillies.

* The 111th race meeting at the Humboldt County Fair set an all-time record for all-sources handle, which came to $4,580,183 for the 10-day meet. The meet ran from Aug. 9-19.