01/08/2007 12:00AM

Horse of the day for 1/3


Gulfstream Park - Race 7
1 1/16 Miles (Turf)
Maiden Special Weight
Purse $44,000

Dale Romans has been desperately trying to get DUVEEN on the grass, but the weather hasn't cooperated. Hopefully, the son of South African Horse of the Year Horse Chestnut will make his turf debut on opening day at Gulfstream. A 140K 'RNA' at the 2006 Keeneland April Two-Year-Olds in Training Sale, Duveen is a half-brother to first-turf winner Casanova Slammer as well as grass stakes-winner Cherry Hill Lady. Both of the dam's career wins came on the turf, and she placed in the Grade 3 Miss Grillo Stakes on the lawn. The second dam (by Pleasant Colony) is a half-sister to Grade 1 winner Dance Teacher and millionaire Gold Mover. Over the past 90 days, Romans is 2-5 (40%, $5.80 ROI) with first-time turf performers (according to Formulator 4.1 statistics). Duveen's dirt lines aren't much to look at so he may end up a square price on Wednesday. SURELY SENT has shown Beyer improvement of late, and projects to be up on the pace. He broke a bit awkwardly last time out before being sent up to contest the splits, but hasn't gained ground from the stretch call to the wire in his last three starts. Still, he holds a pace advantage over the horses in the body of the race, and must be respected. ALTAMA is a half to French Group 3 turf winner Comillas, and the female family is full of grass influences. Sire Awesome Again is only 4-116 (3%) with first-turf performers, however. SENOR ENRICO finished ahead of Surely Sent last time out at Calder, and the fourth-place finisher of that race returned to graduate by open lengths on dirt. He's well-bred, and owns a very competitive Beyer, but must avoid a wide trip from an outside post if he is to break in from the also eligible list. WESTERN BLUFF finished ahead of Senor Enrico and next-out turf graduate Top Cross when nipped by March to Victory, the recent fourth-place finisher in the Kris S. Stakes at Calder. Throw out his dirt lines, and you're left with a very logical contender. GLITTERBOY goes out for top connections, but has been beaten four times at 5/2 odds or less, and will be stuck on the far outside if he does get to play. HOLIDAY TRIP showed promise in both turf starts at Saratoga, and may work out a nice garden trip from the inside post. Both horses that beat him at the Spa are now stakes-winners.

The Play: Duveen to Win and Place (6/1 odds or more)