11/17/2001 12:00AM

Grey Ballet overcomes trouble


MIAMI - Grey Ballet served notice she was back on top of her game last month when she finished second in the Calder Oaks. She left no doubt Saturday after rallying to a half-length victory over Blondaway in the $60,000 Lenta Stakes for 3-year-old fillies on the turf.

Grey Ballet had to overcome bumping at the start of the Lenta, after which she settled near the back of the pack under jockey Jose Ferrer. She worked her way forward into the stretch, steadied briefly near midstretch, and ran down Blondaway in the final strides. Blondaway rallied three wide around the second turn and took the lead near the eighth pole. Jennasietta finished third.

Sara's Success, who defeated Grey Ballet in the Calder Oaks, raced within striking distance but came up empty through the stretch and finished sixth as the 6-5 favorite.

Grey Ballet paid $10.80 after covering 1 1/16 miles in 1:42.62 over a firm turf course.

"I had some anxious moments the last 100 yards out wondering if she'd get through, but she did," said winning trainer Leo Azpurua Jr. "We gave her a little break after Hialeah because of a pulled muscle and missed our main objective this summer, the Boiling Springs at The Meadowlands, when the race came off the turf."

Grey Ballet will make her next start in the Frances A. Genter Stakes on Dec. 15.

Groomstick Stock's rises

Groomstick Stock's, making just his second start of the year, won Saturday's $60,000 Western Borders Handicap by a half-length over the late-striding Dancing Guy.

Groomstick Stock's won two stakes last year but had not raced this year until Oct. 29, when he finished behind Sea of Tranquility in the Daniels Boy Handicap.

A son of Groomstick, Groomstick Stock's stalked the pace of Salty Glance in the Western Borders, assumed the lead on the turn, and easily withstood Dancing Guy's belated rally. Sea of Tranquility, the 8-5 favorite, rallied mildly to be third.

Groomstick Stock's covered 6 1/2 furlongs in 1:16.86 under regular rider Rosemary Homesister Jr. and paid $16.

"He didn't come back well from the Fred Hooper last year, so I decided to give him some time off," said Paul Brettler who trainers Groomstick Stock's for owner Julian Demora. "Then he had several minor setbacks. He ran well in the Daniel's Boy so I decided to try him today."

Brettler will point Groomstick's Stock to the Fred Hooper Handicap on Dec. 29.