09/15/2006 11:00PM

Laurel: Friel's for Real by head


Friel's for Real outdueled Silmaril in an extended drive down the stretch of the $100,000 Gala Lil Stakes at Laurel to grab a head victory in the one-mile race for fillies and mares.

Trained by Ned Allard, Friel's for Real proved her love of Laurel once again. The 6-year-old mare, based at Philadelphia Park, has now turned in five of her 13 victories at the Maryland track, including the Gala Lil in 2004.

Early on in Saturday's race, Friel's for Real and jockey Horacio Karamanos sat in fourth position as Roving Angel set fractions of 24.09 seconds, 47.42, and 1:12.09, stalked closely by Silmaril and Ryan Fogelsonger. Silmaril took over in midstretch to hold a clear lead as Roving Angel faded to sixth and last, but Friel's for Real moved five wide and caught Silmaril near the sixteenth pole.

Owned by her breeder, Gilbert Campbell, Friel's for Real covered the mile on a wet-fast main track in 1:37.47 and paid $7.20 to win as the second choice in the wagering. The favored Dickie Small-trained entry of Sticky and Take a Check ended up third and fourth, respectively.

* The Gala Lil undercard featured two five-furlong turf sprints for juveniles, the Oliver's Twist and the Gin Talking, but both were transferred to a wet-fast main track. In the $50,000 Oliver's Twist, heavy favorite Clifton Park ($2.80) led all the way under jockey Rosie Napravnik en route to a three-quarter-length victory. Six String was second after a three-wide rally in the scratch-reduced field of five Maryland-breds.

The stakes victory was also a maiden victory for Clifton Park, who finished third in his debut at Saratoga. He was timed in 59 seconds on Saturday.

* In the $50,000 Gin Talking, for statebred fillies, another heavy favorite went wire to wire as jockey Jose Caraballo hand-rode Your Flame in Me ($2.60) to a 4 1/2-length romp. Trainer Mike Trombetta got the exacta, as he also sent out the second-place finisher, What Time It Is.

Your Flame in Me covered the five furlongs in 57.92, more than a second faster than the open Oliver's Twist two races earlier.