04/14/2011 2:27PM

Gulfstream: Wolfson has three for South Beach


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Trainer Marty Wolfson has entered three Farnsworth Stable horses for Saturday’s $60,000 South Beach Stakes, but it’s Cherokee Queen who will garner the majority of the attention if she starts in the final regularly scheduled event on Gulfstream Park’s 2011 stakes schedule.

Cherokee Queen is already a graded stakes winner at the meet, having rallied to a convincing two-length victory over Never Retreat in the Grade 3 Suwannee River on Feb. 5. A 6-year-old daughter of Cherokee Run, Cherokee Queen has started once since, shipping up to Tampa Bay Downs, where she finished fourth in the Hillsborough after surprisingly setting the pace in that Grade 3 event.

Although her last two starts have come at nine furlongs, Cherokee Queen is quite comfortable at the 7 1/2 furlongs of the South Beach, having won both the Hollywood Wildcat Handicap and a money-conditioned allowance race at that distance last season at Calder.

Wolfson also has Dancin Perfect and Folk Dancer among the 13 prospective starters for the South Beach.

Dancin Perfect is a stakes-tested mare who was claimed by owner-trainer Dan Foley for $40,000 out of her 2010 finale at the Fair Grounds on Dec. 18, then subsequently purchased and turned over to Wolfson late last month. She has had just a single work since shipping to south Florida, a half-mile in 49 seconds at Calder on April 6. Dancin Perfect has been stakes-placed four times during her career but not since finishing third against males in an overnight event at Louisiana Downs on Aug. 28.

Folk Dancer was claimed by Farnsworth for $50,000 out of a fifth-place finish at Santa Anita on Jan. 30. Little time was wasted shipping her east, and she has already started twice during the current session, finishing third and fifth under second-level optional claiming and allowance conditions over the main track.

Strike It Rich is the only other graded stakes winner in the field, having captured the Grade 3 Boiling Springs last summer at Monmouth Park. Trainer Christophe Clement gave Strike It Rich more than six months off following her disappointing 12th-place finish in Saratoga’s Grade 2 Lake George. An Unbridled’s Song filly, she returning to finish fifth in an optional claiming and allowance event here on Feb. 11.

Trainer Seth Benzel will send out Melnyk Racing Stable’s homebred Carem Crescent for the first time. A multiple stakes winner, shew has proven to be more proficient on artificial surfaces than grass. She has been idle since finishing fifth in Woodbine’s Grade 3 Seaway Stakes in early September.

Sea Road, who captured the Boynton Beach over the local turf course last winter, also returns off an extended vacation to launch her 2011 campaign for trainer Stanley Hough, who has won with 4 of his 9 starters at the meet.