08/06/2010 3:02PM

IEAH points new acquisition Trickmeister to Travers

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Barbara D. Livingston
Trickmeister, recently acquired by IEAH Stables, could make his next start in the Travers Stakes.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – The Travers Stakes picked up a new starter and, if you believe his connections, the horse to catch in the race, in the undefeated Trickmeister, a recent purchase made by Michael Iavarone’s IEAH Stables.

Trickmeister, a son of Proud Citizen previously owned by Brereton Jones and Timothy Thornton and trained by Cindy Jones, has won all three of his starts, including the $105,000 Barbaro Stakes at Delaware Park on July 10. He has set the pace in all three of his starts.

Iavarone said his group closed the deal to buy Trickmeister about a week ago and the horse was shipped to Richard Dutrow Jr.’s barn at Saratoga, where on Thursday he breezed five furlongs in 1:03.66, his first work since the Barbaro.

“We like him,” Dutrow said Friday. “He’s a good-looking horse, he’s got plenty of size to him. Iavarone bought him for the Travers. Right now, I certainly can’t argue with him. I like the horse, I think we’re in pretty good shape with him.”

Iavarone said what sold him on the colt was “his physical make-up. He’s one of the most impressive looking horses I ever put my eyes on. He is all man, that’s the best way to put it.”

That’s a big statement, considering in 2008 Iavarone and IEAH campaigned Big Brown, winner of the Kentucky Derby and Preakness.

Iavarone said he believes that Trickmeister will be the pacesetter in the Travers on Aug. 28 even if First Dude, the pacesetter in the Preakness and Belmont, runs.

“We’re committed to the lead.” Iavarone said. “If First Dude wants to win the Travers he might have to deal with us. I would imagine that it would take a lot to outsprint our horse, especially early in the race. This horse has an incredible stride.”

The Travers field will likely be in flux for several weeks, but a large field is likely. As of Friday, those under consideration included A Little Warm, Admiral Alex, Afleet Express, First Dude, Fly Down, Friend or Foe, Ice Box, Miner’s Reserve, Pleasant Prince, Super Saver, Trappe Shot, and Trickmeister.

Gone Astray works for Iselin

Gone Astray, who scored a powerful, five-length victory last month in the Salvator Mile at Monmouth Park, is scheduled to head back there on Aug. 21 for the Iselin Handicap, and on Friday morning at Saratoga, trainer Shug McGaughey sent him out for a five-furlong work in 1:00.84.

“He breezed good,” said McGaughey, who said the reason he felt Gone Astray ran so well last time is that he was “ridden right” by Cornelio Velazquez.

“Cornelio got him back,” McGaughey said. “The pace was slow, but he was patient. He rode a great race.”

Among those locally stabled who are also expected to go to Monmouth for the Iselin are I Want Revenge and Redding Colliery.

McGaughey mulls options for Persistently

Persistently won an allowance here on July 30 so impressively that McGaughey is pondering running her in the Grade 1 Personal Ensign on Aug. 29. But with Rachel Alexandra headed for that race, along with Life At Ten, it is not an easy decision. McGaughey trained Personal Ensign, who won all 13 of her starts.

“I’d like to run her back in the right spot,” McGaughey said. “I’ll have to wait and see. Obviously we’re thinking of the Personal Ensign.”

McGaughey said if the field did not come up as strong as now feared, “I’d have to re-trace my thoughts on it.” He said that a likely alternative would be the Molly Pitcher at Monmouth, also on Aug. 29.

Legal Consent retired

Legal Consent, who finished third in Thursday’s John Morrissey Stakes, suffered an injury to the suspensory ligament in his left front ankle during the running of the race and will be retired, his connections said Friday.

Trainer Carlos Martin said it would take several months for Legal Consent to recover from the injury and there was no guarantee he would return to the form that enabled him to win three stakes and $431,651 in his 16-race career for owner/breeder Lansdon Robbins.

“As far as I’m concerned, I won’t run the horse again and I think Lansdon is of the same mindset,” Martin said. “It’s the right thing. Unfortunately, all good things have got to come to an end.”

Intriguing pedigrees in maiden race

Sunday’s fourth race, a 6 1/2-furlong maiden event for 2-year-old fillies, contains several first-time starters with intriguing pedigrees.

Trainer Todd Pletcher sends out Summer Laugh, a daughter of Distorted Humor and the third foal out of Summer Colony, who won the Grade 1 Personal Ensign over this course.

“She’s a filly that’s been training very forwardly. I’m looking forward to getting her started,” said Pletcher, who trains Summer Laugh for owner/breeder Ed Evans. “She has tactical speed.’’

Bill Mott sends out a first-time starter Classy Touch, a son of Maria’s Mon out of the Alabama winner Flute.

“The filly’s by Maria’s Mon. She seems like she’s got a little [speed],” Mott said.

Miss Smarty Paints, a daughter of Smarty Jones, shows solid works for trainer Seth Benzel. Sovereign Crisis is a half-sister to Tempted Stakes winner Elusive Lady.

Well-bred firster debuts

Voodoo Storm, a regally bred colt by Storm Cat out of the stakes-winning turf mare Voodoo Dancer, makes his debut in Sunday’s fifth race, for 2-year-olds going 5 1/2 furlongs on the turf. With a pedigree like that, McGaughey, his trainer, is heading right to the grass.

“I don’t think the dirt would hurt him, but the grass is better,” McGaughey said. “He’s worked on the dirt and grass. I think he’s better on the grass. He’s a pretty nice colt. He’s fast.”

– additional reporting by Jay Privman