08/02/2004 11:00PM

Habiboo cruises into stakes debut


OCEANPORT, N.J. - The budding local star Habiboo, allowance winner Rings and Things, and Delaware Oaks runner-up Ender's Sister are among those likely for the Grade 2, $200,000 Monmouth Oaks on Aug. 15, a 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-old fillies.

Habiboo is gaining rave reviews for her recent work. She won her last two starts impressively, an 18-length maiden victory and a 7 1/2-length allowance win.

Habiboo was a $210,000 yearling purchase by Amy Tarrant for her Hardacre Farm Stable. Tarrant, who has been an owner for many years, has been a trainer for the past two seasons.

"I am a rookie, but this is wonderful," said Tarrant. "This is what I want to do. I've raised five children. They are all grown up. Guess what? This is what mom's going to do the rest of her life. I'm a racetracker."

Tarrant has two wins at the meet, courtesy of Habiboo.

"We're a small stable, so it's nice to have a horse showing that kind of promise," said Tarrant. "She's loving what she's doing right now. We're pretty happy with her, and she gave our barn a lift."

Tarrant, who has 12 horses at Monmouth, said she was drawn to Habiboo at the Keeneland September sale.

"It was the way she looked," said Tarrant. "She had a nice pedigree page. She had a racy look about her. There is something about her."

Tarrant says she thinks the time might be right to take the stakes plunge.

"The tug is to get her into some stakes now, or I can play through conditions," he said. "I am very interested in the Monmouth Oaks. It might be a fun thing to put her in. There are a lot of advantages to being at your own track, especially for fillies. Shipping seems to take something out of them."

Trainer Patrick Biancone has no qualms about shipping to Monmouth from his base in Saratoga. He has been highly effective this meet, winning with five of his seven shippers.

One of those winners was Rings and Things, who won an off-the-turf allowance race at Monmouth by 7 1/2 lengths.

Biancone, who has Lion Heart on target for Sunday's Grade 1 Haskell Invitational, said Rings and Things might make her second stakes start in the Monmouth Oaks. She was beaten by more than 20 lengths in December in the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet at Hollywood Park and suffered a suspensory problem in that race, which kept her out of action before the Monmouth victory.

Robyns Gold Charm returns home

Having exhausted his allowance conditions against New York-breds, Robyns Gold Charm will make a rare appearance at his home track in Thursday's $41,000 allowance feature at 1 1/16 miles on the turf.

Robyns Gold Charm, a 6-year-old gray gelding, scored a 43-1 victory over statebred company in his season debut June 13 at Belmont Park. He had not been out since last Aug-ust, when he faded badly after pressing the pace.

"The horse looked like he was off form last year," said trainer Dennis Manning. "He had a quarter crack that didn't pop until later in the fall. He's gotten over that. Hopefully, he'll run well again."

Chris DeCarlo has the mount.