09/11/2005 11:00PM

Lemon Maid out with ankle chip


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Lemon Maid, one of the top 3-year-old fillies on the grounds, has gone to the farm in Ocala, Fla., and will not see action again this season.

"She came out of her last race with a little chip in her ankle," said Malcolm Pierce, who trains Lemon Maid for the Live Oak Plantation of Charlotte Weber. "We played around with it a little bit, but were afraid we would do more damage if she went on. They're going to clean up that ankle down there, and we will have a nice 4-year-old."

Lemon Maid, a Kentucky-bred, made a successful debut at Fair Grounds in February and went on to win 3 of 4 starts here, all in stakes.

Her only defeat came in the Grade 3 Selene, a 1 1/16-mile race in which she finished second to Gold Strike, who went on to win the Labatt Woodbine Oaks and finish third in the Queen's Plate.

Lemon Maid had been slated to make her next start in the $125,000 La Lorgnette, a 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-old fillies here Sept. 24.

But Pierce and Live Oak still could have a La Lorgnette starter in Elle Runaway, who became a stakes winner here last time out in the Ontario Colleen at one mile on turf.

"She's really doing well lately," said Pierce. "I think she's a notch better on turf, but she's quite respectable on dirt. I will have to see what other options I have for her."

Pierce also plans to be represented in Sunday's Summer, one of two Grade 2 turf stakes on the Atto Mile undercard.

Badge of Truth is slated to make his stakes debut in the Summer after winning his maiden by 5 1/4 lengths in an off-the-turf maiden special at seven furlongs here Aug. 20.

"He has been working very well," said Pierce, who sent out Badge of Truth to breeze five furlongs in 1:00 on the training track turf course here Sunday.

Arravale will switch to dirt

Arravale underlined her fondness for the turf course here Sunday afternoon with an impressive victory in the Grade 3, one-mile Natalma.

A Kentucky-bred 2-year-old filly trained by Mac Benson, Arravale is now 2 for 2. She won her maiden in a seven-furlong grass race here Aug. 13.

"I've always liked her, but I didn't know how good a filly she was," said Benson. "She's a big, strong filly with a lot of sense.

"She never showed any brilliance, but she always showed solidness. The more we've done with her, the better she is. The last couple of months, she really came to herself."

With the Natalma being the last local turf stakes for the division, Benson plans to move Arravale over to the main track for the Grade 3, $250,000 Mazarine, a 1 1/16-mile race here Oct. 1.

"With her breeding, we had to try the Natalma in her immediate future," said Benson. "If she's able to handle dirt as well as grass, that gives us a tremendous number of options."

Nashinda soon to resume training

Benson also is looking forward to the return of Nashinda, a 4-year-old filly who won the first two sprint stakes for her division here this spring but disappointed in two subsequent tries, the first at 1 1/16 miles and the latest on turf Aug. 5.

"I gave her some time off, in the hot weather," said Benson. "I'm putting her back in training at the end of this month."

Nashinda will be pointed for the fall's two filly and mare sprint stakes, the six-furlong Ontario Fashion on Nov. 5 and the Grade 3, seven-furlong Bessarabian on Dec. 3.

That could lead to a showdown with Fifth Overture, who has taken over as the division's premier sprinter in Nashinda's absence.

A Kentucky-bred 4-year-old trained by Eric Coatrieux, Fifth Overture registered her fourth straight victory here last Saturday in the Grade 3 Seaway at seven furlongs.

Fifth Overture also won the Sweet Briar Too at the same distance here July 3.

Two prep for Canadian Handicap

Black Rock Road and Mona Rose both worked five furlongs on the grass here Sunday in their major tune-ups for Atto Mile Day's other major supporting feature,

the Grade 2, $300,000 Canadian Handicap at 1 1/8 miles on turf.

Exercise rider Randy Dwarki was aboard Black Rock Road, who went in 1:00.40 over the turf training course.

"She worked by herself," said trainer David Bell. "It was a nice breeze."

Black Rock Road is coming off a third-place finish in the Canadian prep, where she was beaten just three-quarters of a length in her second start of the season.

"Coming off a sprint, she was just so sharp," said Bell. "She was a little silly in the paddock, and a little silly in the gate, then she got rank in the race."

In her previous outing, on July 22, Black Rock Road had returned from an eight-month layoff to score convincingly under third-level allowance terms at seven furlongs on turf.

Todd Kabel retains the mount on Black Rock Road, who has been assigned 114 pounds for the Canadian.

Mona Rose, who also gets in with 114 pounds, will be ridden by Eurico Rose da Silva, but exercise rider Anthony Dew was in the irons when the filly worked 1:00.20 on the main turf course.

"I thought she worked awesome," said Steve Attard, who took over as Mona Rose's trainer two weeks ago. "It looks like she's in good shape; everything looks right with her."

Mona Rose made the first 18 starts of her career for trainer Earl Barnett, winning five races and $457,407.