02/12/2009 12:00AM

Lime Rickey can improve


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla - There are two ways to approach Saturday's $125,000 Hallandale Beach Stakes for 3-year-olds on the turf. Either find the best horse coming out of the Dania Beach Stakes here four weeks ago or toss out that race completely and look for a new shooter.

Six of the first seven finishers in the Dania Beach, including the winner, Jack Spratt, were entered back for the 1 1/16-mile Hallandale Beach, although Jack Spratt will start only if the race is washed off the grass. That would leave Lime Rickey, who finished second, beaten just a half-length despite some trouble on the final bend, as the most logical choice coming out of the Dania Beach.

"He's still a little green and immature at times, but he's a very nice horse, and I think he'll improve off that last race," said Frank Alexander, who trains Lime Rickey for the Dogwood Stable. "He should have beaten Pioneerof the Nile last summer at Saratoga, and it worked out well that Jack Spratt is not going to run, because I was able to get Julien Leparoux, and he should fit this horse very well."

For those looking to beat the horses exiting the Dania Beach, Into My Soul and Tamborim fit the profile.

Into My Soul has not started since easily handling a field of first-level allowance horses, including Lime Rickey, over the Aqueduct turf in his 2-year-old finale on Nov. 20. In his previous start, his first after moving to trainer Rick Dutrow's barn, Into My Soul finished a wide-running second in an overnight stakes at Belmont Park.

Into My Soul has trained well for his 3-year-old debut, with one black-letter work on the dirt and a couple of breezes on the grass here during the past five weeks.

Tamborim has not started since outfinishing Adari to win Calder's restricted Appleton Juvenile Turf on Nov. 8. That's the race from which This Ones for Phil returned to make headlines winning the Sunshine Millions Dash here last month. Tamborim, a son of Belong to Me, has prepped for his return at Payson Park.

Beacon Hill Road finished third after opening a clear lead in early stretch of the Dania Beach in the best performance of his career. He in turn was followed across the wire by Adari, who finished strongest of all after dropping back to last during the early stages of the contest.