03/27/2009 11:00PM

Luzzi convinces Weathered to relax


OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Weathered completed a successful winter meet by capturing her first career graded stakes, winning Saturday's Grade 3, $105,800 Next Move Stakes by 1 1/2 lengths at Aqueduct.

Winning Point, who appeared to be getting a perfect trip behind dueling leaders, settled for second, 4 3/4 lengths ahead of Successful Sarah. Point Me to It and Bourbon Maid completed the order of finish. Nijinsky Bullet scratched.

Weathered, a 4-year-old New York-bred daughter of Key Contender, added the Next Move to her victory in the last month's Rare Treat Stakes. She is the fifth filly or mare to win both races, the first since Biogio's Rose, also a New York-bred, in 2000.

Overall, Weathered has won 9 of 15 starts for Eddie Shapoff's Chevalier Stable.

In the Rare Treat, Weathered had everything her own way as the lone speed. Saturday, she had to deal with the speed of Successful Sarah, who under Eddie Castro ran the opening quarter in 23.43 seconds and the half-mile in 48.36 seconds. Mike Luzzi kept Weathered up close but in the three-path down the backside in an effort to keep his filly relaxed.

"I didn't want her to go too fast; keep her relaxed, let her think she's alone,'' Luzzi said. "She's kind of a grinder. She doesn't have a good turn of foot, so you don't want to run an [11-second eighth] somewhere.''

Weathered took the lead midway around the turn, opened up a length lead turning for home and held Winning Point at bay in the stretch. Weathered ($3.70), trained by Karl Grusmark, covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1:52.44.

"She's been doing extremely well, I thought she'd run awfully well, and she didn't disappoint us,'' Grusmark said. "Mike did a good job just sitting off [the pace] and she withstood the late run of [Winning Point] and that's who I was worried about.''

Grusmark said he would consider running Weathered in the $250,000 Sugar Maple Stakes at Charles Town on April 18.