09/03/2007 12:00AM

Mott ends meet with a bang


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - In a fitting conclusion to the Saratoga meet, Majestic Warrior, trained by Bill Mott, rallied from 11 lengths back with three furlongs to run and rolled to a 2 1/4-length victory in Monday's Grade 1, $250,000 Hopeful Stakes before a closing-day crowd of 20,314.

Ready's Image, the 3-5 favorite, finished second, 3 1/4 lengths ahead of Maimonides. It was 7 1/2 lengths back to Georgetown in fourth.

The win capped a spectacular meet for Mott, who led all trainers with 27 wins, 11 of those with 2-year-olds. Mott had won or shared eight previous trainer titles, but never had done as well as this.

"Words can't describe it for me, this really tops it off," Mott, 54, said. "It doesn't get much better than this. The only problem is I hope I don't try to do better than this next year.''

It appears as thought Mott will have plenty to look forward to next year with an army of 2-year-olds that will turn 3. Majestic Warrior, owned by George Steinbrenner, had won his debut nicely, but didn't get the accolades that Ready's Image, a multiple stakes winner, or Maimonides, an 11 1/2-length debut winner, had received.

Maimonides, who was ridden by Kent Desormeaux after Rafael Bejarano got hurt earlier in the day, made the pace and set fractions of 22.60 seconds and 45.00 for the opening half-mile. John Velazquez, aboard Ready's Image, didn't want to let Maimonides get too far away. So he moved Ready's Image within a half-length of Maimonides around the turn. Majestic Warrior, under Garrett Gomez, was 11 lengths off the pace at that point.

Ready's Image struck the front in midstretch, but Gomez had Majestic Warrior in gear and he ran by Ready's Image inside the sixteenth pole. Majestic Warrior ($15), a son of Grade 1 winners A.P. Indy and Dream Supreme, covered the seven furlongs in 1:23.04.

"Leaving the half-mile pole I thought they had gotten away from our horse a little bit; at that point I would have had to wonder if he was going to make up that kind of ground,'' Mott said. "He puts in a tremendous run. He has to be a good horse to make up that kind of ground.''

Ready's Image's loss capped a somewhat disappointing meet for trainer Todd Pletcher, who finished in a four-way tie for second place in the standings with 13 wins from 115 starters. Pletcher had won the previous five trainer titles.

Glens Falls: Rosinka by a neck

Despite taking some awkward steps in the stretch, Rosinka ($10.60) held on for a neck victory over Mauralakana in the Grade 3, $111,200 Glens Falls Handicap. It was two lengths back to Pictavia in third. Makderah, the 4-5 favorite, finished sixth after getting stopped at the quarter pole.

It was the fourth consecutive victory for Rosinka, an Irish-bred daughter of Soviet Star owned by Alistair McDonald Buchanan and trained by Graham Motion.

"She's all racehorse, but she's kind of weird in the head,'' said winning rider Jeremy Rose, who won two races on the day. "Sometimes she'll get out, sometimes she gets in, and she got in today. I bumped the rail a little bit, she just went back on with it.''

Motion said he would point Rosinka to the Grade 1 Flower Bowl at Belmont on Sept. 29.

* Classic Neel ($6.50), Eibar Coa up, wore down a stubborn Unspoken Word to win the $83,750 Weekend Madness Stakes by a neck. It was a half-length back to a hard-closing Lady Digby in third.