08/18/2010 3:37PM

Lisa's Booby Trap will switch to turf for Riskaverse

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Barbara D. Livingston
Lisa's Booby Trap, unbeaten in four starts on dirt, will switch to turf after a successful experiment working out on grass Wednesday at Saratoga.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. – It’s not often a trainer considers a surface change with a horse that’s won all four of her starts on dirt by a combined 42 3/4 lengths. But nothing about Lisa’s Booby Trap has actually been orthodox.

The rags to riches story of a horse nobody wanted trained by a nearly broke horse trainer added another chapter Wednesday when Lisa’s Booby Trap blazed three furlongs over the Oklahoma turf course in 35.27 seconds under jockey Kent Desormeaux.

A short while later, owner/trainer Tim Snyder confirmed that Lisa’s Booby Trap would make her next start in the $70,000 Riskaverse Stakes here at one mile on turf on Sept. 2. She had initially been considered for the Grade 3, $100,000 Victory Ride Stakes going six furlongs on dirt on Aug. 28.

“There’s a lot more money in turf racing than dirt racing and it’s a lot easier on them too,” Snyder said.

Snyder said he also liked the idea of a one-mile race rather than a six-furlong race in which he believes the big, lanky filly would have to be rushed. Three of Lisa’s Booby Trap’s four career victories have come at six furlongs, including a six-length score in the Loudonville here on Aug. 6.

Snyder was planning on having jockey Kent Desormeaux simply gallop Lisa’s Booby Trap on the turf course Wednesday. According to Desormeaux, Snyder told him if she likes it then “let her go,” Desormeaux said.

It took Desormeaux only an eighth of a mile to get the impression that Lisa’s Booby Trap was handling it.

“I thought she just took to it like a duck to water,” Desormeaux said. “I let her file in behind a set that was in front of her and just tried to maintain the distance between us. I caught her in 47-and-2 for the half. I think they now have a turf option.”

Snyder purchased Lisa’s Booby Trap for $4,500, using the last $2,000 he had to buy the horse and paying the rest off with the purse money won from the debut race. He named the horse after his wife Lisa, who died of ovarian cancer in 2003, as well as a gentlemen’s club in south Florida he used to frequent.

Lisa’s Booby Trap is blind in her left eye.

Valiant Passion sold to Team Valor

Team Valor International has purchased the 2-year-old filly Valiant Passion from part-owner/trainer Ralph Nicks and will transfer her to Todd Pletcher.

Valiant Passion, a daughter of Lion Heart, won her debut here on Aug. 12 by 9 1/4 lengths, despite having to be steadied for a significant amount of time around the far turn. She split horses three wide and powered home an easy winner without ever being hit. She ran 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:04.66 and earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 79.

“I was very impressed by the way she ran,” said Barry Irwin, founder and CEO of Team Valor. “She had a lot of trouble; once she got clear she just flew and galloped out good. She’s not tall, but she’s long and she’s got a long length of rein, and she looks like she’ll go long. It’s tough to find a 2-year-old filly that can route.”

Irwin said Valiant Passion would make her next start in the Grade 1 Spinaway here on Sept. 5.

Get Stormy targets Bernard Baruch

Get Stormy, front-running winner of the Grade 2 Fourstardave Handicap here on Aug. 1, will make remain in Saratoga and make his next start in the Grade 2, $200,000 Bernard Baruch Handicap on Aug. 27, trainer Tom Bush said Wednesday.

Bush had considered options out of town, including the Red Bank Stakes at Monmouth Park on Sept. 5, but elected to stay at Saratoga, where Get Stormy is 3 for 4. On Wednesday, Get Stormy worked a strong five furlongs in 59.60 seconds over the Oklahoma turf course. It was the fastest of 31 works at the distance.

“It was a tough call, but Get Serious and him have the same style,” said Bush, referring to a horse that is pointing to the Red Bank. “I don’t mind the six weeks to the Shadwell [Mile at Keeneland]. He’s won three times up here. I loved the way the horse worked today. He couldn’t have done it any better.”

Austintatious fatally injured in turf work

Austintatious, a 5-year-old son of Distorted Humor, suffered fractured sesamoids at the conclusion of a Wednesday morning workout over the Oklahoma turf course and had to be euthanized.

Austintatious began his career in Europe with trainer Brian Meehan and owner Andrew Rosen and then Team Valor. Owner Gary Barber bought him and transferred him to the U.S. and trainer Dale Romans, for whom he won a first-level allowance race on turf at Monmouth Park on July 4. He finished seventh in a second-level allowance here on July 25.

With Monday’s scheduled turf workouts canceled due to rain, Wednesday was an extremely busy morning on the course, and the fact no one got seriously hurt was extremely fortunate. Another Romans horse, Mr. Tribute, nearly ran into Austintatious while galloping out at the end of a work.

The turf course is open for training on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays and is confined to a 30-minute period, during which dozens of horses breeze and dozens more simply gallop. On Wednesday, traffic cones referred to as dogs were up, further reducing the amount of space on the course.

Monmouth Cup next for Musket Man

Musket Man, who finished third to Blame in the Grade 1 Whitney here on Aug. 7, will make his next start in the Grade 2, $300,000 Monmouth Cup at Monmouth Park on Oct. 9, trainer Derek Ryan said Wednesday.

Ryan had initially thought about running Musket Man back in the Woodward here on Sept. 4, but wants a race closer to the Breeders’ Cup Classic on Nov. 7.

“I just want to run him one more time before the Breeders’ Cup,” Ryan said. “When we decided to go in the Whitney we decided to put him back around two turns. He’s better going a mile and an eighth, where he can sit back and make his run. A mile is a mad dash. We might as well go for all the marbles.”