05/23/2001 11:00PM

Mott may be due for a win


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Trainer Bill Mott will try to end a long drought at Woodbine Saturday when he runs Del Mar Show in the second division of the $166,650 Connaught Cup Stakes, a 1 1/16-mile turf race.

Mott is winless with his last 11 Woodbine starters, and hasn't won here since Geri captured the 1997 Woodbine Mile. Del Mar Show has won all three of his starts this year, the most recent a one-length victory over Honor Glide in the Grade 2 Hialeah Turf Cup.

Robbie Davis retains the mount on Del Mar Show, who has a big edge on his eight rivals in terms of Beyer Speed Figures.

Incitatus, who captured the 1999 Connaught Cup and was second in last year's running, is also in the second division. He hasn't raced since he finished seventh in the Sept. 3 Niagara BC Handicap.

Exciting Story and Solitary Dancer head an eight-horse field in the first division of the Grade 3 Connaught Cup, which is worth $165,150.

Exciting Story has had many highs and lows during his career. He was voted the Sovereign Award as champion 2-year-old in 1999, but was stepped on in his final start that year and had his tendon sheath severed. After a long convalescence, he finished fifth in his first and only attempt on the grass last July, and has since evolved back into a serious runner.

After running second to Wake at Noon in the April 8 Jacques Cartier Stakes, Exciting Story upset Wake at Noon a month ago in the Vigil Handicap while earning a whopping Beyer Figure of 110. Trainer Mark Casse believes Exciting Story, a son of Diablo out of a Valid Appeal mare, is at the top of his game.

"I was thinking about running him in the Met Mile on Monday," Casse said, "but it looks like it's coming up pretty tough. There's some big races coming up for him on the grass. The only time he ran on the grass was coming off that injury, and he didn't run all that badly. He's bred for the grass."

Solitary Dancer returned from a 3 1/2-month layoff to bag the allowance prep for this race just eight days ago. Trainer David Bell wasn't surprised with the result.

"He'd been training very well," said Bell, who said he isn't crazy about running the horse back this soon. Bell said that he and owner John Franks discussed it, and noted that Solitary Dancer "did win the prep pretty easily."

Alybgood might return

Trainer Mary Jo Lohmeier, who saddles Medievil Hero in the first division of the Grade 3 Connaught Cup Saturday, entered a horse at Woodbine for the first time last fall - sending out Alybgood to a seventh-place finish in the Wonder Where at 1 1/4 miles on the turf.

Alybgood, an Ontario-bred 4-year-old by Alydeed, went on to win two turf allowances at Gulfstream Park for owner Joseph Lacombe, and could return to Woodbine for the $150,000 Dance Smartly, a Grade 3, 1 1/8-mile turf race for fillies and mares, on July 7.

* Poetically, last year's champion 2-year-old filly, will make her seasonal debut against older opponents in the sixth race on Saturday's card, a $100,000 optional claimer.

- additional reporting by Bill Tallon