12/03/2010 2:19PM

Harmonizer looks in top form

Email

Harmonizer will have recency in his favor on Sunday, when he takes on comebacking stakes winners Good and Lucky and Flat Out in a $40,000 optional claiming allowance at Fair Grounds.

The one-mile and 70-yard race has second-level allowance conditions, and it drew a field of eight older horses.

Harmonizer last raced on Nov. 13, and closed rapidly to finish second in a $50,000 optional claimer at Aqueduct. It was the latest solid effort from the horse, who seems to have stepped up his game since adding blinkers following a half-length loss in a $50,000 starter allowance at Saratoga on Aug. 12.

“A horse came over on him that day at Saratoga,” said Mike Maker, who trains Harmonizer for William J. Butler. “It caused him to lose a little momentum, watching that horse.”

Maker looked to improve Harmonizer’s focus with blinkers, and added the equipment for another $50,000 starter at Saratoga, on Aug. 30. The horse won by 1 3/4 lengths and earned a career-high Beyer Speed Figure of 93. Harmonizer then took a first-level allowance at Belmont Park before closing from last in the Nov. 13 one-turn mile race at Aqueduct. He will be moving back to two turns on Sunday, and last meet won two route races at Fair Grounds. Harmonizer will break from post 9.

“We’ll just let him place himself, whatever makes him happy,” Maker said. “He’s been involved early in the race at times and sometimes he makes his run late.”

Richard Eramia has the mount on Harmonizer, who is part of a 30-horse division that Maker has at Fair Grounds. He is new to the meet and came to town because he has clients from Louisiana.

Good and Lucky has not raced since June 15, when he was fifth in a $20,000 optional claiming allowance at Fort Erie. He is in for the tag on Friday, and it will be the first time since 2008 that the gelding, who is now 7, has raced for a claiming price.

Good and Lucky has been a Fair Grounds favorite for years, having compiled a 6-for-12 record over the main track in New Orleans. His last local stakes win came in December 2009, when he took the $60,000 Tenacious. James Graham has the mount for trainer Josie Carroll.

Flat Out, the winner of the $50,000 Smarty Jones at Oaklawn in 2009, has not raced since finishing sixth in that year’s Arkansas Derby.