10/21/2009 11:00PM

Levine tries to keep rolling


ELMONT, N.Y. - As poorly as things went for trainer Bruce Levine during the summer at Saratoga, they are going swimmingly for him this fall at Belmont. Levine hopes that trend continues in the $125,000 Hudson Stakes at Belmont Park on Saturday, when his Driven by Success takes on 10 rivals in the six-furlong stakes for New York-breds.

At Saratoga, Levine lost with his first 40 starters, including Driven by Success, who was upset at 2-5 odds by Law Enforcement in the John Morrissey Stakes at 6 1/2 furlongs. Levine finished that meet 1 for 48. With two winners on Thursday's card, Levine had 11 for the meet, tying him for second with Richard Dutrow Jr. He trailed only Todd Pletcher.

On paper, Driven by Success, a 4-year-old gelding, looked like a lock in the Morrissey. But he got hooked in a wicked speed duel with Dr. W, and despite opening up a three-length lead in midstretch, he was run down by Law Enforcement.

"I was surprised that horse stayed with him for as long as he did," Levine said. "He really hung in. I didn't think that horse could do that. That's what got me beat."

Though Dr. W is in this field, his trainer, Steve Asmussen, is removing blinkers, which may be a sign he doesn't want Dr. W dueling for the lead. Levine said he hopes shortening up to six furlongs will benefit Driven By Success, who breaks from the rail under Ramon Dominguez.

"I couldn't be happier with him," Levine said. "I wouldn't trade places."

Rain is in the forecast, and Driven by Success finished second in his only try in the slop, but that was a two-turn race.

Mark Hennig, the trainer of Law Enforcement, went 6 for 49 at Saratoga but entered the final three days of this meet on a 0-for-29 skid. After winning the Morrissey, Law Enforcement finished last of 12 in the Grade 1 Forego; Driven by Success was eighth. Law Enforcement is a three-time winner at Belmont, but Hennig said he is a little leery of an off track.

"I don't think he's crazy about it; he sure doesn't move up on it," Hennig said. "When it rains, it tends to get pretty speed-favoring."

Law Enforcement, who breaks from post 11 under Kent Desormeaux, is the 124-pound highweight and is spotting seven pounds to Driven by Success.

If the track is wet, Finger Lakes shipper Too Tough Pete could become a live longshot as he is 2 for 2 in the slop. Too Tough Pete has won 9 of 18 career starts.

Be Bullish and Legal Consent, the first- and third-place finishers from the Sir Keys Stakes Stakes here Oct. 2, are potential upsetters.