08/04/2011 2:47PM

Monmouth Park: Zero Rate Policy looking good for Select Stakes


OCEANPORT, N.J. – A better post and the absence of Flashpoint makes the $75,000 Select Stakes for 3-year-olds a more favorable spot for Zero Rate Policy on Saturday at Monmouth Park.

Last time out, Zero Rate Policy had the rail on a muddy track in the Grade 3 Jersey Shore Stakes over the Independence Day weekend. Trainer Terri Pompay knew combination of the off track, the innermost post, and Flashpoint spelled trouble.

As usual, Zero Rate Policy was out and winging early. He ran hard and fast before fading to fourth.

“The last time, he had a horrible trip,” Pompay said. “Right before the race, they opened the track up, which made the rail even deader. It was all speed. We went and we burned ourselves out. He wasn’t very comfortable being stuck down on the fence.”

The signs look more positive in the six-furlong Select. Zero Rate Policy landed post 5 and tuned up with a sharp 34.60 workout last weekend.

“He blew out great for the race,” Pompay said. “He looks great and we’ve got a better post.”

As usual, Carlos Marquez Jr. will be aboard.

Zero Rate Policy dominated inhis two starts here prior to the Jersey Shore, winning a first-level allowance and the Rumson Stakes. Overall, the gelding is 3-1-0 in 5 starts.

Chipshot, who edged Zero Rate Policy by a head for third in the Jersey Shore, also returns for the Select. Trainer Steve Asmussen named Corey Nakatani to ride Chipshot.

Royal Currier switches back to the main track following two grass efforts for Mike Farro, who trains the New Jersey division for wife Patricia.

A sharp gate-to-wire winner of the Anderson Fowler Stakes in his turf debut, Royal Currier most recently ran eighth in the Quick Call overnight stakes at Saratoga on July 28. This is a pretty quick turnaround.

“He was slipping on the course at Saratoga,” Farro said. “He didn’t do much. He only ran about three-eighths of a mile. He’s doing good. He’s ready to roll.”

Royal Currier has been a productive claim for $20,000 from a maiden race here last September. The gelding has won five times since then, including a trio of overnight stakes.

Angel Serpa will ride.

Trainer Todd Pletcher sends out the uncoupled duo of Trippi’s Charm and Cal Nation, third most recently in the Grade 2 Carry Back Stakes at Calder.

Watch Me Go completes the six-horse field.

◗ Trainer Juan Serey always believed Caffe D’Oro would make a good turf horse. After 29 career starts, the 5-year-old gelding is finally proving him right.

He switched back to the grass for his last two races, picking up a win and a second against first-level allowance company. Caffe D’Oro will try to sustain the solid form in the $65,000 My Frenchman Stakes at 5 1/2 furlongs, which begins from the inner turf chute.

“He’s doing real good,” Serey said. “He’s better than ever. When we got him back here on the grass, he started to run good. They’re going to have to come and get me.”

That could be a huge tactical edge. On paper, Caffe D’Oro is one of the few confirmed front-runners in the field.

“If they beat me, it will be right at the finish line,” Serey said.

Regally Ready is the horse most likely to keep Caffe D’Oro company in the early stages following Grade 3 wins in his last two outings, including the Turf Sprint at Churchill Downs. A 4-year-old gelding trained by Asmussen, Regally Ready is 5-0-1 in six grass sprints.