05/14/2010 11:00PM

Harlan Street back at favorite track


In his 16-race career, the 5-year-old gelding Harlan Street has raced at eight different tracks in five states and run on dirt, turf, Polytrack, and Tapeta. The only place he really loves, however, is the main track at Mountaineer.

Harlan Street, 6 for 6 at Mountaineer but 2 for 10 everywhere else, returns to his favorite track for Tuesday night's $75,000 Waterford Park Handicap at six furlongs.

Based in Kentucky with trainer Albert Skinner, Harlan Street reeled off three consecutive wins at Mountaineer from late December through early April, including the Christmas Stakes, before enduring a wide trip when asked to stretch out in the Grade 3 Texas Mile at Lone Star Park.

Five of his last six Beyer Speed Figures have been in the narrow range between 92 and 95.

Scott Spieth, who has been aboard for all six of Harlan Street's wins locally, retains the mount.

Among Harlan Street's five rivals, there is another horse-for-the-course. Bernie Blue, a Thistledown-based gelding who has recorded 13 of his 21 lifetime victories at Mountaineer, begins his 8-year-old campaign after being on the sidelines for 9 1/2 months.

Bernie Blue is a seven-time stakes winner locally, including the Dale Baird Memorial last July 4. He was second in the 2008 running of the Waterford Park.

Senor Fuego, who has dominated optional claimers going two turns at Charles Town in his two starts since coming to Maryland-based trainer Mark Shuman's barn, cuts back to six furlongs for the first time since winning his career debut in May 2009 at Churchill Downs.

Nay's Tap, beaten 3 3/4 lengths by Harlan Street the last time they met in December, was a two-time stakes winner last season, including the Sophomore Sprint Championship at Mountaineer in November. He most recently finished third behind multiple stakes winner Russell Road in the Springtime Handicap at Charles Town.

Written in Stone, claimed out of a runner-up finish for $60,000 on Woodbine's Polytrack earlier this month, returns to dirt, where he posted three consecutive Beyers between 93 and 97 at Fair Grounds last winter.

I Am the King has been first or second in 6 of 8 starts at Mountaineer, but in the two losses he was trounced both times by Harlan Street.