09/08/2004 11:00PM

Manning hoping for turf try


OCEANPORT, N.J. - The remnants of Hurricane Frances lingered over the Jersey Shore, casting a cloud over the weekend stakes at Monmouth Park.

Two of the four stakes are slated for the turf: the Grade 3, $150,000 Boiling Springs Handicap for 3-year-old fillies on Sunday and the $60,000 Majestic Prince for 3-year-olds Saturday.

The surface status depended on how much more water Frances dumps on the course before departing. Monmouth moved all grass races carded for Thursday and Friday to the main track.

The Monmouth area was relatively lucky. The Jersey Shore got rain Wednesday and Thursday, but nothing like the drenching downpours that paralyzed parts of New York City.

Trainer Dennis Manning is hoping the Majestic Prince remains on the grass so that Victory Alleged can make his turf debut.

A son of Victory Gallop, has won 1 of 4 starts and was most recently second by a neck in a Monmouth allowance race.

"He's bred for the grass, and he's got a grass foot," said Manning. "I tried to make a dirt horse out of a grass horse. I found out that I can't."

The Majestic Prince looks like a reasonable spot to make the transition.

"Hopefully, it will be a short field, and I'll get a gauge on the horse," said Manning. "I know he can handle the grass, because I trained him on it over the winter."

Manning has a decision to make if Frances forces the race off the turf.

"It would be questionable," said Manning. "It would depend on how much the race falls apart. If it's off the turf, I'll wait to see what happens."

Chris DeCarlo will ride.

would certainly benefit from the race remaining on the grass. The colt shifted back to the turf for his second grass start and scored a stalking victory in the Ocean Place Resort Stakes on the Haskell Day undercard. Eibar Coa has the mount for trainer Todd Pletcher.

The unbeaten will tackle two turns for the first time. He won his debut at Fort Erie by 12 3/4 lengths and scored next time out on the turf at Woodbine via a disqualification.

Lion Tamer heads Formal Gold

, a winner of three Grade 2 stakes, holds a substantial class edge in the $65,000 Formal Gold Stakes at 1 1/16 miles Saturday.

Trained by Todd Pletcher, Lion Tamer has won 6 of 11 starts and most recently held a brief lead in the Grade 2 Tom Fool Handicap at Belmont Park ultimately won by Ghostzapper. Eibar Coa will ride.

Trainer Alan Goldberg entered two, Run to Victory and Runspastum. Run to Victory shifts back to the main track after running a dull seventh over a soft course in Monmouth's Elkwood Stakes.

Runspastum makes his first start since last October. He captured the off-the-turf Grade 3 Oceanport Handicap last season.

Julian Pimentel was named to ride both Goldberg trainees.

Jumpers make local return

Steeplechase racing returns to Monmouth with a pair of races on closing day, Sept. 26. It will be the first appearance by jumpers at Monmouth since 1992.

The races are the $50,000 Metcalf Memorial Novice 'Chase and a $20,000 allowance race. Both will be run at 2 1/4 miles over National fences.