06/09/2006 12:00AM

'The Man' faces two toughies


Trainer J. David Braddy had toyed with the idea of sending Yes He's the Man to New York for the Grade 2 Woody Stephens on the Belmont Stakes undercard, but instead opted to keep the 3-year-old colt at home in anticipation of facing much softer competition in Sunday's $65,000 Gilded Time Stakes at Monmouth Park.

The presence of Delaware shipper Master of Disaster and the long-idle Justawalkinthepark, however, could make Yes He's the Man work much harder in the six-furlong Gilded Time than he had in winning two similar sprint stakes in his last two starts.

, runner-up to Henny Hughes in the Grade 2 Saratoga Special last summer, returned from a six-month layoff to win a second-level allowance sprint at Delaware Park, earning a 98 Beyer Speed Figure. He set swift fractions of 21.73 and 44.90 seconds, and got up by a nose after being briefly headed in the stretch.

In a highly positive sign, the horse Master of Disaster edged, Shamss, came back to defeat older horses in an optional claiming sprint at Pimlico with a 96 Beyer.

, an easy winner against maidens in his second career start last September, made just one more start at 2, finishing third as the beaten favorite in the six-furlong Huntington Stakes at Aqueduct. Interestingly, he finished 8 1/4 lengths ahead of Master of Disaster in that race.

In preparation for his 3-year-old debut, Justawalkinthepark has put together a string of swift workouts, including back-to-back bullet moves. Based on those works and the fact he missed by just a nose in his career debut, Justawalkinthepark can be expected to fire fresh.

has won his last two outings by a combined 11 lengths, leading wire to wire with a 104 Beyer in the six-furlong Naked Greed at Calder in late April and sitting second and drawing clear in the 5 1/2-furlong Select at Monmouth three weeks later.

Two others with a shot are Garibaldi, freshened since he finished second with an 87 Beyer in a first-level allowance at Keeneland, and Put Back the Shu, who managed to finish second to Yes He's the Man despite stumbling badly at the start of the Select.