01/13/2007 12:00AM

Horse of the day for 1/12


Gulfstream Park - Race 5
1 1/8 Miles
Maiden Special Weight
Purse $44,000

RED GIANT broke poorly from the rail in a one-turn mile at Aqueduct, and was rushed up along the inside to track the pace. He stayed on nicely over the speed-favoring surface, and acts like he'll appreciatetoday's added distance. He draws a nice inside post for his initial two-turn test, and may end up with a great ground-saving trip behind speedsters GHOST ORIE and MOST DISTINGUISHED. Red Giant should be very competitive on the dirt at Gulfstream on Friday afternoon, but he's also one to watch on turf down the road. He's a half to grass stakes-winner Carnera by Giant's Causeway, and his female family is full of turf influences. Also, it's interesting to note that the Giant's Causeway - Kingmambo 'nick' has produced British Group 1 turf winner Maids Causeway.
Most Distinguished is the logical horse after piling up five straight top-three finishes, but he's already burnt a lot of money, and has yet to gain ground from the stretch call to the wire. He'll be bet hard again in this spot as he towers over the field on Beyer Speed Figures. PROFITEER is a beautifully-bred Phipps/McGaughey colt with valuable experience around two turns. He exits an interesting key race in which the third finisher, Johannesburg Star, returned to break his maiden with a 102 Beyer before running second in the listed Count Fleet Stakes. Profiteer boasts improving Beyers, and should save ground from his inside post.
GHOST ORIE improved a ton when allowed to go long over a muddy Meadowlands strip. He won a quick pace duel with one half of the favored 3-5 entry in that race, and was coming back on the good-trip mate to just miss to that one by a head. He's an intriguing pace possibility, and should be a price.
CURRENT CASE and SACRIFICE BUNT both may have been aided by a closer-friendly Keeneland surface on October 27. The latter is a full brother to Grade 2 winner Vision and Verse.

The selection: Red Giant to win and place (9-2 odds or more)