11/17/2011 1:38PM

Laurel Park: Bluegrass Atatude back on dirt in Smart Halo Stakes


Bluegrass Atatude may have thrown a clunker when she was beaten almost 15 lengths at 8-5 odds in her turf debut 3 1/2 weeks ago. But her previous dirt form and a recent five-furlong bullet workout over Laurel Park’s main track stamp her a serious contender in Saturday’s $75,000 Smart Halo Stakes for 2-year-old Maryland-bred fillies.

Trained by John Salzman Jr., Bluegrass Atatude is the lone stakes winner in a field of nine going six furlongs on the main track.

Two starts ago, Bluegrass Atatude overcame a poor start, in which she bore out, to come from 8 1/2 lengths back after a quarter-mile to win the Maryland Million Lassie by three lengths. She regressed in a one-race turf experiment, but indicated her fitness by breezing five-eighths in a best-of-11 1:00 on Nov. 9.

Coincidentally, Defy Gravity also earned a bullet for the identical time in a five-furlong workout since her most recent race, a 3 1/4-length win in a high-priced optional claimer contested over a sloppy track Sept. 22. Her only off-the-board finish in four starts came when she was ambitiously spotted in the Grade 2 Matron at Belmont Park in early July.

Doe, who has already raced 10 times since May, including back-to-back, two-turn stakes seven days apart last month at Delaware Park, comes back quickly again. Runner-up against colts in both the Dover and the Charles Town Juvenile, Doe returns 10 days after missing by a neck in an optional claimer.

Dance to Bristol owns the best last-race Beyer Speed Figure, a 72 for her 3 1/4-length score in an off-the-turf maiden sprint in the slop. Enthusiasm for her chances, however, must be tempered by the fact trainer Ollie Figgins is 0 for his last 24 with 2-year-olds who won their maiden last time out.

Fellow Charles Town shipper Dangerous Vixen responded to the stretch out from 4 1/2 furlongs to 6 1/2 furlongs with a 9 1/2-length victory in a nonwinners-of-two allowance. She is a potential “bounce” candidate coming back less than three weeks after improving her Beyer 29 points.

Pragteada, a debut winner for trainer Graham Motion, is difficult to gauge. She rallied from sixth to win her maiden at Keeneland, but that race and all of her workouts have come on synthetic surfaces.