09/07/2007 11:00PM

'Liz' caps big day for Calabrese and Catalano


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - It was a dream Saturday at Arlington Park for the leading connections at the meet.

A half-hour after Dreaming of Anna won the Pucker Up Stakes for owner Frank Calabrese and trainer Wayne Catalano, Dreaming of Liz won the Arlington-Washington Lassie Stakes. Dreaming of Liz's win was the third on the card for Catalano and Calabrese, giving Catalano 71 wins at the meet, two more than the previous record set by, you guessed it, Catalano in 2005.

Dreaming of Liz could now be headed to the race that made Dreaming of Anna champion 2-year-old filly of 2006 - the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies.

The two horses aren't related, but Calabrese bred both of them and E.T. Baird rode both winners Saturday. Dreaming of Liz, a daughter of El Prado and Calabrese's 1997 Lassie winner Silver Maiden, won her stakes debut, and won it well.

Breaking on top from post 11 for Baird, Dreaming of Liz set fractions of 23.40 seconds for her opening quarter-mile, 46.45 for the half-mile, and 1:11.52 for six furlongs. The 56-1 shot Rasierra came up to her past the quarter pole, but Baird began asking for run, and Dreaming of Liz gave it to him, pulling away late to win by 2 1/2 lengths. She went a one-turn mile in 1:37.08, and paid $5 as the favorite in an 11-horse field. Rasierra was a clear second over 28-1 Minewander. Second-choice Wonderful Luck never was a factor and finished eighth.

Dreaming of Liz finished fourth in her career debut on July 13, but Catalano believed she was talented, and wasn't worried.

"I told Frank, 'I'm running her today because she needs a race to wake up,' " Catalano said.

And wake up she did. Dreaming of Liz won a six-furlong maiden race Aug. 10 by seven lengths, and improved off that performance on Saturday.

"She's still not all there yet," Baird said. "She's kind of loafing, but she's doing it all so easy."

And if Dreaming of Liz still has room to grow, Calabrese and Catalano could be in line for another run at the Breeders' Cup - and another championship.