Updated on 09/16/2011 8:58AM

I'm All Yours all set

Adam Coglianese/NYRA
By winning last year's West Point I'm All Yours ended up the champion New York-bred turf horse.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - I'm All Yours was last year's champion New York-bred turf horse, in part because of a victory in the West Point Handicap at Saratoga. In search of another statebred title, I'm All Yours seeks a repeat victory in the $75,000-added West Point, the feature race on Friday's card at Saratoga.

I'm All Yours will be out to avenge a loss in statebred competition in the Kingston Handicap at Belmont Park on May 26. Celtic Sky and Reluctant Groom, two of his rivals in the West Point, finished in front of I'm All Yours that day, but I'm All Yours had a brutal trip that will wear out the rewind button on horseplayers' VCR's.

"He had a rough trip," Todd Pletcher, the trainer of I'm All Yours, acknowledged Wednesday morning at Saratoga. "If he runs his 'A' race, he'll be tough to beat.

"He kind of got covered up in that race, and he couldn't get out until it was too late. Jerry," Pletcher said, referring to jockey Jerry Bailey, "said in retrospect he'd have been better off getting out early and giving him time to make his run."

Bailey utilized that strategy in I'm All Yours's last start, a victory against open money-allowance runners at Belmont on July 11. That race, like the West Point, is at 1 1/8 miles on turf. With that last win, I'm All Yours now has eight victories in 15 starts, and he has never finished out of the money in eight grass races, winning six.

"He's a very consistent, sound horse," Pletcher said. "But he's taking the worst of the weights."

I'm All Yours carries top weight of 124 pounds, conceding six pounds to Celtic Sky and seven to Reluctant Groom.

Celtic Sky, like I'm All Yours, has raced once since the Kingston. He was third, as the 9-5 favorite, in an open non-winners-of-three allowance race at Belmont on June 29. Celtic Sky has more tactical speed than I'm All Yours, who comes from far back.

Christophe Clement, who trains Celtic Sky, credited Jose Santos with engineering the upset in the Kingston. "Jose rode a very aggressive race that day and it worked out great," Clement said.

Reluctant Groom, who set the pace in the Kingston, again figures to be prominent from the start. As a 3-year-old last year, he was second to I'm All Yours in the West Point.

"It took a Herculean effort by I'm All Yours to come flying and beat him," said Patrick Kelly, who trains Reluctant Groom. "He's come back a little more mature 4-year-old. He's got speed, or he can stalk. All his grass races, he's on the bit. Sometimes it's easier to steal a mile-and-an-eighth race that it is a mile."

- additional reporting by David Grening

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