05/29/2008 11:00PM

Graded stakes wins up over last year

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Topped by Pays to Dream's victory in the Grade 2 Dixie Handicap on Preakness Day, New York-breds continued to perform well in open stakes races during May.

On the same day, New York-bred Icabad Crane ran third in the Preakness Stakes, while Be Certain won the Grade 2 National Hunt Cup over fences.

Pays to Dream was the seventh New York-bred winner of a graded race on the flat in 2008, surpassing the figure of six for all of 2007.

The historic Dixie, a Grade 2 race at 1 1/8 miles on turf worth $250,000, was run for the 107th time.

Bred and owned by December Hill Farm, Pays to Dream sent his career earnings to $337,741, and his record to 5-1-3 from 14 starts.

The 4-year-old gelded son of High Yield placed in the graded Saranac and Jamaica handicaps last year, with fellow New York-bred Mission Approved winning the Saranac.

Pays to Dream defeated five stakes winners in the Dixie, of which two, Shakis and Buffalo Man, were graded stakes winners.

Foaled at John Hettinger's Akindale Farm, he is out of Changing Ways, by Time for a Change.

Changing Ways won the Grade 2 Schuylerville Stakes for December Hill Farm.

She is also the dam of Hot Attraction, who placed in the Grade 3 Santa Ynez Stakes.

Changing Ways is a half-sister to Jacodra's Devil, winner of the Grade 3 Santa Anita Budweiser Breeders' Cup, from a family that includes multiple graded stakes winner Tejano Run.

Icabad Crane, by Jump Start, has never been worse than third in five starts, with earnings of $235,400.

He entered the Preakness off a victory in the open Tesio Stakes at Pimlico on April 19.

Bred by Gallagher's Stud and owned by Earle I. Mack, Icabad Crane comes from an outstanding New York family.

His dam is Adorahy, by Rahy.

His second dam, Adorable Micol, won the Grade 3 Countess Fager Handicap, and is the mother of Adcat, winner of the Grade 3 New Hampshire Sweepstakes.

Adorable Micol is also the dam of stakes winner Adorydar, who ran third in the Grade 1 Hollywood Oaks.

This family also includes the brilliant turf distaffer Rutherienne and Albany Handicap winner Gratiaen.

Meanwhile, Be Certain was the state champion steeplechaser for 2007, winning the Wolfe Memorial at Camden, S.C., in November.

His National Hunt Cup win at the Radnor Hunt Races in Malvern, Pa., sent his career earnings over $87,500.

The race was worth $75,000 at 2 3/8 miles.

Bred by Sugar Maple Farm and owned by Alnoff Stable, Be Certain is a 4-year-old is a son of Thunder Gulch. Be Certain is out of Do Mountain Doo, by Mountain Cat.

Do Mountain Doo is a half-sister to Banshee Winds, the dam of Eclipse champion female Banshee Breeze.

By the Light beats open foes in Pearl City

By the Light, the state champion juvenile filly for 2007, kept on rolling in her season debut last weekend at Belmont Park.

The only New York-bred in the $75,000 Pearl City Stakes, she overcame a tardy start to remain unbeaten in five races.

By the Light, a daughter of Malibu Moon, won the Lady Fingers and New York Breeders Futurity last year at Finger Lakes, defeating males in the latter.

She ended her season by winning the $300,000 Delta Princess Stakes at Delta Downs.

Owned by Samantha Siegel's Jay Em Ess Stable, By the Light was bred by Paul Rothfuss. She is out of Dixie Tempo, by Major Impact.

Dixie Tempo is a full sister to Queen of Wilshire, winner of the Grade 3 Hawthorne Handicap, from a family that includes Grade 1 winner Bounding Basque and champion Heavenly Cause.

Purchased by Siegel for $190,000 at the Fasig-Tipton Eastern September sale, By the Light has now earned $497,565.

* The 2008 stakes program got under way at Finger Lakes on Monday, marked by Johnie Bye Night's third consecutive score in the George W. Barker Handicap.

Bred by Kirsten LeBlanc and owned by trainer Charlton Baker, the 6-year-old gelded son of Langfuhr is out of the French Deputy mare Romantic Interlude.

Johnie Bye Night descends from the family of Greentree Stable champion Late Bloomer.