11/28/2008 12:00AM

Hamsa can stop Tagg's skid


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - If trainer Barclay Tagg hasn't ended his six-week long drought by Sunday, he very well could do so when he sends out Hamsa in Sunday's $65,000 Kamikaze Rick Stakes at Aqueduct.

Through Friday, Tagg had gone winless with his last 40 starters in New York, including all 29 he had run at Aqueduct. (Tagg had three horses scheduled to run Saturday, including Tale of Ekati in the Grade 1 Cigar Mile.) Tagg's last winner in New York was Dr. Decter on Oct. 18 at Belmont. Dr. Decter is entered in Sunday's first race.

Hamsa, like her trainer, is in search of a long-awaited victory. After winning two of her first three starts, Hamsa has dropped her last four. Among those defeats was a well-beaten second to Music Note in the Grade 1 Gazelle. Most recently, Hamsa finished second to the front-running Spritely in the Honey Bee Stakes at the Meadowlands.

"She's a pretty nice filly," Tagg said. "She deserves a stakes win."

Hamsa should appreciate turning back to a one-turn mile. Her two victories have come in one-turn races. Eibar Coa rides from post 3.

Trainer Michael Trombetta is 3 for 4 at this meet and sends out Drift to the Lead for the first time. The filly had previously been trained by Larry Jones, who has sent the bulk of his stable to Fair Grounds.

Drift to the Lead, a daughter of Yonaguska, is coming off a sharp-looking allowance score at Delaware last out.

Tar Heel Mom, coming off a win in the Meadow Star Stakes going six furlongs, and Awesome I Am are other contenders in this field. Awesome I Am is coming off a 12th-place finish in the Raven Run Stakes over Keeneland's synthetic surface.

Tonja Terranova, assistant trainer to her husband, John, said Awesome I Am hated Keeneland's Polytrack.

Laragh may go to Hollywood Starlet

Laragh, the third-place finisher in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf, may be headed back to Southern California for a start in the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet on Dec. 13, Tonja Terranova said.

On Friday, Laragh was credited with a four-furlong work in 48.46 seconds over the Belmont training track. She breezed in company with the unstarted 3-year-old filly Dziki, starting just behind that horse and finishing just in front.

"She trained really well when we were out at Santa Anita,'' Terranova said of Laragh. "If she continues to do well, [the Starlet] is a very good possibility.''

Laragh, a daughter of Tapit, won a seven-furlong maiden race over the synthetic surface at Woodbine. Following that race, she was purchased privately by the International Equine Acquisitions Holdings Stable, but remained in Canada to run in the Natalma Stakes on turf. She caught soft ground that day and finished fifth.

After being transferred to the Terranova barn, Laragh won the Jessamine Stakes on turf at Keeneland by 4 3/4 lengths.

In the Breeders' Cup, Laragh set strong early fractions and opened up a 2 1/2-length lead in midstretch before being caught late by Maram and Heart Shaped.

Love Cove will return next year

Based on victories in her last two starts, Love Cove will enter 2009 among the leaders of the New York-bred filly and mare turf division. She ended her 4-year-old season with a victory in Thursday's Shopping for Love Stakes, which came a month after her victory in the Ticonderoga Handicap. Only a nose loss to You Go West Girl in the Hey Baba Lulu Stakes prevented her from ending the year on a three-race winning streak.

"We believe she's just starting to be at her best,'' trainer Tom Albertrani said. "She could have a really nice 5-year-old year the way she's maturing.''

Albertrani said Love Cove will get a break in south Florida, where she may make one start before returning to New York in the spring.

Meanwhile, Albertrani has taken over the training of Zada Belle, who worked five furlongs in 1:00.02 Friday over the Belmont Park training track in preparation for a start in next Saturday's $75,000 Garland of Roses Handicap. It was the fastest of 34 works at the distance.

"Her last work was really on the slow side, so we came back and put a nice work into her today,'' Albertrani said.

Zada Belle is coming off a front-running score in the Seton Hall Stakes at the Meadowlands, her fifth win from eight career starts. Zada Belle has been transferred from Sheikh Mohammed's Godolphin Stable to his Darley outfit.

Dutrow Day at the Big A

For holiday shoppers, Friday was known as Black Friday. For horseplayers, Friday was simply Dutrow Day.

Brothers Chip, Tony, and Rick all recorded victories at Aqueduct on Friday. For Chip, whose given first name is Sydney, his victory with Artistic Talent in the opener was his first since he returned to training a few weeks ago. Chip, the youngest of the three brothers at 48, trained for a brief period in 2002-03. Artistic Talent is owned and was previously trained by Bobby Frankel.

Tony Dutrow, the oldest of the three at 50, won the second race with Mister Nobody ($6.20). Rick Dutrow picked up his win when Diamond Isle ($4) won the sixth.

Fabulous Strike gets 112 Beyer

Fabulous Strike earned a 112 Beyer Speed Figure for his victory in Thursday's Fall Highweight Handicap in which he ran six furlongs in 1:09.02 under 136 pounds. His was the fastest Fall Highweight since Senor Speedy ran 1:08.62 under 131 pounds in 1991. Fabulous Strike's time was just faster than Richter Scale (1:09.05 in 1999) and Salt Lake (1:09.07) in 1992.

Fabulous Strike will point to the Grade 3, $100,000 Gravesend Handicap here on Dec. 27, when his competition is expected to include graded winners Lucky Island and Songster.

Pletcher assistant returns to Kentucky

Anna Seitz, who has worked for trainer Todd Pletcher for the last 3 1/2 years, will leave that operation after Sunday to join Fasig-Tipton as a marketing assistant and client coordinator.

The move enables Seitz, 28, to return to her native Kentucky, where her parents own and operate Brookdale Farm.

"I got to work with so many great people," Seitz said. "I had a lot of good experiences. I miss my family, I miss Kentucky. I'm ready to move back.''

* Jockey Norberto Arroyo Jr. took off his mounts Friday to go to Boston to be with his ailing father.