05/09/2007 12:00AM

Horse of the day for 5/10


Churchill Downs - Race 5
7 Furlongs
Maiden Claiming ($15,000-$10,000)
3-year-olds and upward
Purse $14,000

GOLD STERLING disappointed the chalk players in his last two races, but he did finish ahead of next-out winner Suave Provocateur (won 10K MCL at Lone Star with 57 Beyer) at Oaklawn, and may appreciate turning back in distance on Thursday. He has consistently put up faster Beyer Speed Figures than the opponents he'll face at Churchill, and should be close to the pace when they swing into the stretch.
SALSA DANCER removes the blinkers after only passing tired runners here 11 days ago. He's run some quick races in the past, but has had plenty of chances to break his maiden to no avail. Expect a more aggressive ride from Rafael Bejarano. Q MAC'S PHONE hasn't raced since January, but this barn has had success with runners returning from similar layoffs in the past few years. He was eliminated turning for home of his most recent race as he was forced extremely wide. Prior to that effort, his Beyers were consistent, and he should be runnning late for Robby Albarado. TUCKER halves in price after showing speed going two turns at Oaklawn. Expect him to rate just a bit turning back in distance, and this lightly-raced runner may still have some upside. HERE ON OUT's best Beyers have come over Polytrack, but he has a hint of early speed, and may be close to the pace.
ITSTRUEDANCING takes a precipitous drop in class for a dangerous barn. He hasn't been out in a long time, but should show good speed against this group.

1. Gold Sterling
2. Salsa Dancer
3. Q Mac's Phone

The play: Gold Sterling to win (2-1 odds or greater)

YTD record based on starts, wins, top pick in the money, and profit/loss of that day's selection: 38-5-12 +($25.40)