07/14/2001 12:00AM

Illusioned scores runaway win in Carry Back


MIAMI - It appeared to be the most wide open of the five stakes on Saturday's $1 million Summit of Speed program, but Illusioned turned the $250,000 Carry Back into a runaway victory, drawing off to a convincing 4 1/2-length victory over 9-5 favorite Beyond Brilliant. The win was the first of two straight on the card for the team of owner George Steinbrenner and trainer Bill Mott. The pair also won the featured Princess Rooney Handicap with Dream Supreme.

Illusioned led throughout under jockey Jorge Chavez, who picked up the mount after his first call in the race, City Zip, was kept home in New York. A homebred son of Woodman, Illusioned set the pace while pressed early by Red's Honor, disposed of that rival leaving the backstretch, then easily held off a mild bid from Beyond Brilliant into the stretch before drawing off with authority. Illusioned needed only mild encouragement near the end.

"He worked very quick a couple of times in New York, but you've still got to bring them over and see what you got," Mott said. Mott took over the training of Illusioned from Richard Ciardullo Jr. shortly after the colt's only defeat, a third-place finish in Hialeah's Bahamas Stakes on April 1. "He beat a pretty fair group today, and did it easily, which is very encouraging."

Illusioned paid $9.40 to win as the third choice in a field of 10 3-year-old colts and geldings. He ran six furlongs in 1:11.08 over a fast track dampened earlier in the day by a brief shower.

Azalea: Hattiesburg rallies wide

Hattiesburg took the long way home but still had enough late kick to run down the previously undefeated Southern Tour and win by a half-length in the $250,000 Azalea Stakes for 3-year-old fillies.

Hattiesburg raced near the back of the 11-horse field early in the Grade 3 Azalea and was forced to swing out to the middle of the racetrack while launching her bid into the stretch. Hattiesburg was still five lengths behind the leaders straightening away for the drive but finished full of run to overtake Southern Tour in deep stretch and record her fifth straight victory and fourth consecutive stakes win.

"She really had some ground to overcome," said Tom Amoss, who trains Hattiesburg for owner Nelson Bunker Hunt. "She's a small, compact type of horse with a great powerful punch near the end. This was the best field she's faced thus far and she is really progressing very well."

Southern Tour, who moved three wide to take command into the stretch, was easily second best, finishing 2 3/4 lengths before the tiring favorite Spanish Glitter.

Hattiesburg paid $10.80. She covered six furlongs in 1:11.81 under jockey Mark Guidry.

"We'll take her back to Churchill and then decide where she'll go next," said Amoss. "She's nominated for the Test, and I know Mr. Hunt would like to run her there. But we'll just wait and see what happens."

Turf Sprint: A different 'Glitter'

Texas Glitter showed a new dimension when he rallied from off the pace to a one-length victory over the fast-closing Sejm's Madness in the $100,000 Calder Turf Sprint.

"He showed something today I like to see. He passed horses down the lane," said assistant George Weaver, who saddled Texas Glitter for trainer Todd Pletcher. "I was surprised to see him where he was at the three-eighths pole, but [jockey Aaron Gryder] did a great job rating him, saving ground on the turn, and getting him to run down horses at the end."

Texas Glitter broke well then was taken back off the early pace set by Kipperscope and pressed by Honorable Pic. Turning for home Kipperscope, the longest price on the board at 26-1, shook free and appeared on his way to a major upset. But Gryder was able to cut the corner with Texas Glitter, who came on strong in the stretch and overtook the tiring leader inside the sixteenth pole. Kipperscope held on to finish third, with Morluc, the 2-1 favorite, a wide-running fourth.

Texas Glitter paid $8.80 after covering five furlongs in 56.91 seconds over a good course.

* Puma equaled the world record of 20.80 seconds for a quarter-mile by a Thoroughbred en route to a three-quarters of a length decision over Roy's Ruckus in the $50,000 Rocket Man Stakes. Abel Castellano Jr. was aboard the winner for trainer Paul Brettler. Puma paid $34. Ultimate Warrior, the 3-5 favorite, broke last and was never a factor, finishing eighth in a field of nine.

* Diamond Studs, one of four Thoroughbreds in the field, rallied under Cornelio Velasquez from next to last to run down Quarter Horse King Rick Rack and post a 1 1/4-length victory in the $25,000 Thoroughbred-Quarterhorse Challenge. Diamond Studs returned $4.40 after covering four furlongs in 46.21 seconds over a fast track.