10/03/2002 12:00AM

Less is more for Histoire Sainte

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ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - There's something to be said for keeping it simple.

What happens when Histoire Sainte doesn't get enough time between starts? "She doesn't run as fast," said trainer Steve Asmussen.

With such a succinct conclusion, Asmussen wasn't going to spend the year beating his head against a wall. He has limited Histoire Sainte's action - waiting out much of the hot summer weather she doesn't like - and with a record of 3-2-0-1 this season, Histoire Sainte has won twice as many times and earned more money than she did in a seven-start campaign last year.

In fact, it's her lone loss in 2002 that's most pertinent to Saturday's Top Corsage, a $42,000 overnight handicap that is Arlington's featured race. Trapped behind horses with nowhere to run from the quarter pole to deep stretch, Histoire Sainte had an awful trip in her last start, the Aug. 16 Reluctant Guest. She finished full of run when she finally found room, and made a strong visual impression that day from the moment she stepped onto the racetrack.

"She's still doing well," Asmussen said.

She will need to be, since the field assembled for the Top Corsage, a 1 1/16-mile grass race, is an excellent one for a race of this purse level.

Chicagoans will get another look at Kiss the Devil, a late-maturing 4-year-old filly whose best races may still be in front of her. Kiss the Devil won a pair of allowance races here this summer by a combined eight lengths, then notched a head win Aug. 31 in the Dade Turf Classic at Ellis Park. The filly she edged that day, San Dare, returned to win a stakes race at the Kentucky Downs meet.

Where Histoire Sainte has a nice turn of foot when asked to make her run, Kiss the Devil is more of a grinder, a long-striding filly with tactical speed who can gallop along at a good clip and still have something left for the finish.

Kiss the Devil has enough speed to ensure that Soccory won't steal the Top Corsage the way she did a Sept. 6 high-end turf allowance here. Then, Soccory set a pokey pace and held on by a neck over Twilite Tryst.

Anasheed returning to Dubai

Anasheed, the Godolphin colt who finished second in the Arlington-Washington Futurity, won't run in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile. Davey Duggan, Godolphin's assistant trainer at Arlington, said Anasheed was shipped to a quarantine facility in New York and will return to Dubai to point for a 3-year-old campaign.

"All the horses of value are in quarantine now," Duggan said. "They'll be waiting for next year."

Duggan said his Arlington string was down to 12 unraced horses. The remainder will disperse from Arlington before the end of the month.

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