02/29/2008 12:00AM

Karakorum Starlet at home in Broadway


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - After taking a shot at the big time in the Grade 2 Barbara Fritchie Handicap, Karakorum Starlet returns to her comfort zone Sunday when she meets five other New York-bred fillies and mares in the $75,000 Broadway Handicap at Aqueduct.

Karakorum Starlet, a 5-year-old daughter of Skip Away trained by Jeff Odintz, has won her last two starts against New York-breds, taking the Ruby Rubles in January and last October's Iroquois Handicap at Belmont Park.

Following the Ruby Rubles, Odintz felt the timing was right to take a shot at a graded stakes race, and the Barbara Fritchie was the logical spot. After chasing a strong early pace, Karakorum Starlet got squeezed somewhat in upper stretch and faded to fifth, 12 1/4 lengths behind the authoritative winner Golden Dawn.

"She looked like she never had a chance to settle in," Odintz said. "From the get-to she was gunning. Turning for home, she got bounced around pretty good. The horse on the inside came over on her, and the horse on the outside came over on her, and they made like half a sandwich out of her. That was her race right there."

Though Karakorum Starlet is running back on just two weeks' rest, Odintz is not concerned. Karakorum Starlet won the Ruby Rubles 10 days after finishing second to Control System - the Barbara Fritchie runner-up - in the Interborough Handicap.

"She lets you know when she's ready to run," Odintz said. "I wouldn't run her back if I didn't think she's ready to run."

Breaking from the rail, Karakorum Starlet, the 120-pound highweight, may have to use her speed under Stewart Elliott.

Trainer Tony Dutrow is sending out the uncoupled entry of Wishing Wishes and Waytotheleft, who won this race last year when in the barn of Gary Contessa. Wishing Wishes rides a three-race winning streak into the Broadway, with two of those wins coming over the inner track.

"She's a nice filly to be around as far as effort," Dutrow said. "She shows up to the play the game as hard as she can play it."

Dutrow said he also put in a claim for Waytotheleft the day Contessa got her for $30,000 on Jan. 28, 2007. She won three consecutive races off the claim, including the Broadway at 22-1.

Tamberino will try to bounce back from a last-place finish in the Ruby Rubles. Laurentide Ice, second in the Ruby Rubles, and Scatkey, away since running second in the Montauk last Nov. 25, complete the field.