07/15/2008 11:00PM

Ginger Brew to rest up for fall


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Ginger Brew, who had been under consideration for the upcoming Wonder Where or Breeders' Stakes, instead is freshening up on the farm and will be pointed for a late summer-fall campaign.

Owned by Stronach Stable, Ginger Brew won the 1 1/8-mile Woodbine Oaks here June 8 and swung back two weeks later to finish a hard-fought second behind Not Bourbon in the 1 1/4-mile Queen's Plate.

"The Plate took its toll; it was a hard race," said trainer Brian Lynch. "We brought her to the farm after for a little break."

The $250,000 Wonder Where, a 1 1/4-mile turf race that is the final leg of the triple tiara for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies, will be run here July 26.

The $500,000 Breeders', a 1 1/2-mile turf race that is the final leg of the Triple Crown for Canadian-bred 3-year-olds, will be run here Aug. 3.

Lynch and Stronach Stable still have candidates for both races, with Money by Honey eyeing the Wonder Where and Sligovitz aiming for the Breeders'.

Money by Honey also made her last start in the Woodbine Oaks but finished a distant eighth as the 8-1 third choice.

"She's a lot better filly than she showed in the Oaks," said Lynch. "I had her up at the farm, and I may have brought her a little too close.

"I've left her in at the track since the Oaks, and we're going to try to turn her form around and have her for the Wonder Where."

Money by Honey has raced once on the grass, finishing a closing second in her debut at six furlongs here last October.

Meanwhile, Sligovitz was a game winner of a first-level off-the-turf allowance at 1 1/4 miles here last Sunday. In his previous start, his local season debut, Sligovitz won a "B" maiden race at 1 1/16 miles on June 11.

In his only turf race, Sligovitz finish a closing fourth in his debut, which came at one mile on Sept. 23.

"His one race on turf here last year, he was a bit green," said Lynch.

Before coming to Woodbine he was well beaten in two starts over the Gulfstream Park oval, both at 1 1/8 miles.

"He was a little disappointing toward the end in Florida, but maybe he's going to round into form," Lynch said.

Royal Challenger back breezing

Lynch also is looking forward to the return of Royal Challenger, a 5-year-old horse who won the Breeders' in 2006.

Royal Challenger last saw action at Calder on Dec. 5, when he ended just 4 1/2 lengths back as the seventh-place finisher in the Grade 2 W.L. McKnight Handicap at 1 1/2 miles on turf.

"He came out of that race with a little problem, and we gave him some time," said Lynch.

Royal Challenger recorded his first breeze of the season here Wednesday, going three furlongs in 36.60 seconds.

"He's been training up at the farm for six weeks," said Lynch. "We're looking for a late summer-fall campaign for him, too."

Saskawea returns in tough spot

Saskawea, who was overshadowed by the likes of Sealy Hill and Bear Now in her 3-year-old campaign, will be making her first start of 2008 here in Friday's Scotzanna.

The $100,000 Scotzanna, a six-furlong overnight stakes for fillies and mares, lured a field of six headed by multiple-graded-stakes winner Sugar Swirl.

"It's come up a tough race," said Steve Attard, who trains Saskawea for owner/ breeder Les Pereira. "But it's come to a point where we needed to run her somewhere, to get a race into her."

Saskawea won the seven-furlong Fury and six-furlong Ruling Angel here last year in a seven-start campaign that netted earnings of $367,900. But her season ended on a bit of a down note when she finished sixth as the favorite in the seven-furlong Jammed Lovely.

"She was coming back quickly there, and probably bounced," said Attard.

Saskawea then headed south to train in Florida, but her progress this season has been far from smooth.

After returning to Attard here in mid-May, Saskawea was sidelined for a month after undergoing throat surgery.

"I wasn't 100 percent happy with the way she came back, and it's been one thing or another since then," said Attard. "She's had all kinds of setbacks. It's been so frustrating."

Sweet Breanna ready to step forward

Sweet Breanna, also owned by Pereira and trained by Attard, had a 3-year-old campaign somewhat similar to Saskawea's, as she finished second in the Woodbine Oaks and placed in three other stakes while banking $322,170 in 2006.

Attard also has had to be very patient with Sweet Breanna, as she had problems in Florida the following winter and then suffered a back injury while preparing for a return to action here last fall.

Sweet Breanna, who wintered in the south again this year and came back to Woodbine along with Saskawea, made her first start in more than 19 months here July 9.

And while she finished 10th of 11 that night in the Repercussion at 6 1/2 furlongs on turf, Attard had plenty of reason for optimism.

"We'd wanted to go in a nonwinners-of-three other than, but it didn't go," said Attard. "Now, we've got that first race into her. She came out of that fantastic. She's ready when we find the right race for her."

* Handicapper and author Jim Mazur will be at Woodbine on Saturday for a one-hour seminar focusing on the upcoming Saratoga meeting. The session will begin at 11 a.m. on the second floor of the grandstand, and attendees will receive a free copy of Mazur's "2008 Saratoga Handicapper."