07/31/2007 11:00PM

Miss Macy Sue on stakes roll


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Trainer Kelly Von Hemel is closing in on a personal milestone of 1,000 career winners. Friday, he appears well spotted to gain his first victory at Saratoga.

Von Hemel, who had 997 career victories through Wednesday, has shipped Miss Macy Sue to the Spa for the $150,000 Honorable Miss Stakes for fillies and mares at six furlongs. It will be Von Hemel's first runner at Saratoga and he appears to have found a pretty soft spot considering it's a Grade 2 race.

Miss Macy Sue will face only four rivals in the Honorable Miss, which serves as a prep for the Grade 1 Ballerina on Aug. 26. Miss Macy Sue, a daughter of Trippi, has won four consecutive stakes, including the Grade 3 Winning Colors Stakes at Churchill on May 28. The filly she beat that day, Cuaba, won a third-level allowance race here Wednesday.

Von Hemel, who went 7 for 21 in stakes at the Prairie Meadows Thoroughbred meet, said maturity has been a key component in Miss Macy Sue's 4-for-4 record in 2007.

"Last year we thought she could perform like she is this year," said Von Hemel, the 42-year-old younger brother of trainer Donnie. "Last year she was speed crazy, this year she's more controllable."

Following Miss Macy Sue's victory in the Winning Colors at Churchill - in which she set a stakes record of 1:08.68 for six furlongs - Von Hemel considered shipping her to Calder for the Grade 1 Princess Rooney Handicap on July 7. But Von Hemel didn't want to ship her such a long way in the heat, so he decided to stay home and run in the Saylorville, a race she won by 2 1/2 lengths under Larry Sterling Jr. in a stakes-record 1:08.66 for six furlongs.

"Larry said she did everything pretty much in hand," Von Hemel said. "He still had horse left when he hit the wire."

Miss Macy Sue arrived in Saratoga on July 25, and on Monday she blew out three furlongs in a bullet 34.84 seconds.

Trainer Bobby Frankel was planning on running Sugar Swirl in the Honorable Miss until she injured both her front feet two days ago. Instead, Frankel will run Indian Flare, who two starts back won the Grade 2 Vagrancy Handicap at Belmont. Most recently, in the Princess Rooney, Indian Flare finished 11th of 13, but Frankel said she tied up the morning of the race.

Burmilla makes her stakes debut after going 3 for 3 for trainer Eoin Harty. G City Gal, the main speed of the race, and Grecian Lover complete the field.