08/27/2003 11:00PM

Lovethatlegend sports Sorority favoritism, six-figure price tag


ALTOONA, Iowa - For most horses entered in Saturday's Iowa Classic Night stakes, a victory would be the high point of their careers. For the 2-year-old filly Lovethatlegend, it may be just a starting point.

Lovethatlegend, a daughter of Gold Legend, heads a field of eight in the $65,000-added Iowa Sorority, one of six Thoroughbred stakes for statebreds that will offer more than $420,000 in purses at Prairie Meadows Saturday. Four Quarter Horse stakes are also carded.

Kelly Von Hemel trains Lovethatlegend for her owner-breeders, Richard and Vickie Cosaert.

Von Hemel has the distinction of having trained Sure Shot Biscuit, the only Iowa-bred ever to earn more than $1 million. After the Sorority, Von Hemel will also be the trainer who developed what is thought to be the highest-priced Iowa-bred ever sold, as the Cosaerts have entered into an agreement with bloodstock agent Mark Reid to sell Lovethatlegend pending a veterinary exam after Saturday's race.

Von Hemel would only say the sales price was "a big number," but sources close to the negotiations say that the price to be paid is $365,000 and that the filly would likely be transferred to trainer Bobby Frankel.

Von Hemel said he had never really asked Lovethatlegend for any speed in the mornings before her debut here May 18 and wasn't sure exactly what to expect. What he got was a front-running 3 3/4-length victory against Iowa-bred males in a 4 1/2-furlong maiden special weight event.

Lovethatlegend then went through a growth spurt that caused her to miss two scheduled works prior to her next start, the Prairie Gold Lassie Stakes on July 6. Lovethatlegend closed gamely in that race to finish second, beaten a length.

"She was growing each day and was a little body-sore," Von Hemel said. "I thought with the race being five furlongs I might get away with missing the works, but it didn't happen."

In her most recent start, Lovethatlegend put in a huge race, defeating male allowance rivals by 7 3/4 lengths in a 5 1/2-furlong dash.

Von Hemel said he will be sad to see the filly go. "Sure Shot Biscuit and Lovethatlegend are the kind of horses that make you want to come to work every morning," he said.

Terry Thompson will ride Lovethatlegend, who will be heavily favored in the six-furlong Sorority.

Full menu of statebred stakes

Plum Sober and Bodgit Be Tru are the leading contenders in the evening's first race, the $65,000 Iowa Cradle for 2-year-old colts and geldings at six furlongs.

Plum Sober fell a half-length short of capturing the Iowa Stallion Futurity in his most recent start. Bodgit Be Tru was an 11-length maiden winner last out in his second career start.

* Soup for Lunch and Eolica head a field of eight 3-year-old fillies, all searching for their first career stakes score, in the $65,000-added Iowa Breeders' Oaks at a mile and 70 yards.

* Rubianos Image leads a field of nine, including an entry, in the 1 1/16-mile Iowa Breeders' Derby. Rubianos Image has won three of his last four starts.

* Defending champion Sharky's Review is the one to beat in the $75,000-added Donna Reed for fillies and mares. Mark Bader trains Sharky's Review, who has a career record of 12-4-5 from 27 starts and $543,783 in earnings.

* Trainer Paul Pearson's entry of Take Me Up and Le Numerous heads a field of 13 in the $75,000-added Ralph Hayes for older colts and geldings at 1 1/16 miles. Take Me Up is the defending champion in the Hayes.