11/23/2007 12:00AM

Mystery Classic breezes for Star of Texas

EmailMystery Classic might be the best horse on the Sam Houston Race Park backstretch, and on Friday morning he stretched his legs over the Houston track. A winner of four straight stakes, he breezed three furlongs in 35.40 seconds in preparation for defense of his title in the $50,000 Spirit of Texas on Dec. 1.

Mystery Classic won the six-furlong race a year ago at Sam Houston with a Beyer Speed Figure of 103. The number had ranked as the best of his career up until his most recent start, when he earned a 106 for his win in the $45,000 J.R. Straus Memorial at Retama Park on Sept. 29. Mystery Classic won the six-furlong race in 1:08.80.

"I thought he ran an awful good race," said Bob Schultz, who trains Mystery Classic for John Pierce.

Schultz said that beyond the Spirit of Texas, Mystery Classic is a candidate for the $100,000 Bonapaw at 5 1/2 furlongs on turf at Fair Grounds on Dec. 22. Earlier this year, Mystery Classic won the $50,000 Brother Brown at five furlongs on turf at Remington Park.

The Spirit of Texas is one of eight restricted stakes on the Texas Champions Day program at Sam Houston. Another Schultz horse targeting the card is Run Danger Run, a 2-year-old who earned a Beyer of 86 for a first-level allowance win at Retama on Nov. 17. He is being pointed for the $50,000 Groovy.

Run Danger Run is one of 32 horses Schultz has at Sam Houston, which opened Friday night. Another of his top runners is Lee's Spirit, who won his third straight race last out in the $58,000 Calcasieu at Delta Downs on Nov. 17. He is a Louisiana-bred, and Schultz said he is being pointed for the $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Juvenile at Fair Grounds on Dec. 8.

Costa Rising headed to Fair Grounds

Costa Rising, who has put up some of this year's best Beyer Speed Figures, remains on deck to defend his title in the $150,000 Louisiana Champions Day Classic at Fair Grounds after winning the $100,000 Gold Cup at Delta Downs on Nov. 17. He was an easy 2 1/2-length winner of the Delta stakes, which came in his first start since Sept. 22.

"It's not often you can go into a race accomplishing all your objectives, but that's exactly what we did," said Glenn Delahoussaye, who trains Costa Rising for Charles Castille Jr. "We wanted to, No. 1, win, and No. 2, use as little horse as possible to win, as we have to come back in three weeks."

The Classic will be run Dec. 8. Costa Rising earned a Beyer Figure of 118 earlier this fall when he won an allowance at Evangeline Downs. Just prior to that start, he earned a Beyer of 115 for his win in the $200,000 Evangeline Mile on Aug. 11. In the Gold Cup, Costa Rising earned a Beyer of 97.

Lady Blue Sky could be retired

Lady Blue Sky, who has won her last 10 races, might be headed for the breeding shed. She did not come out of a Nov. 6 work to trainer Don Roberson's satisfaction, and he is contemplating breeding the mare.

"She's done for the year," said Roberson, who owns Lady Blue Sky with his wife, Windy. "She hurt her tendon a little bit, so I'm going to give her a little time off. I may even breed her and raise a colt off of her. That's probably what I'm going to do. But I'm not sure yet, though."

Lady Blue Sky, who last raced in a starter allowance at Remington in August, began her win streak in the $40,000 Richmond for Indiana-breds at Hoosier Park on Oct. 6, 2006. From there, she won races at Charles Town, Fair Grounds, Delta, Evangeline, Prairie Meadows, Indiana Downs, and then Remington.

She was 8 for 8 during 2007, and at one point ranked as the winningest horse in North America. Overall, the 5-year-old Lady Blue Sky has won 17 of 32 starts and $279,567.

No. 5 for Whirl or Absolutely True?

Whirl and Absolutely True will each be seeking his fifth consecutive win Sunday when they meet in the $55,000 Express at Zia Park. The 6 1/2-furlong race drew a field of five, with other top contenders being War Bridle.

Whirl began his streak in August with an allowance win at Albuquerque. From there, he won a pair of sprint stakes, including the $150,000 Premier Breeders' Cup at Zia. He last raced on Oct. 20, and won a 6 1/2-furlong allowance under regular rider Alex Jimenez. Whirl is trained by Greg Green.

Jon Arnett trains Absolutely True, who began his win streak in June. He won an allowance at Arapahoe, then captured the $27,000 Fort Range at that Colorado track before moving to New Mexico and winning back-to-back stakes at Albuquerque in his last two starts. He will be ridden by Ken Tohill.

* Brownie Points, a multiple stakes winner of $551,309, is being freshened and will return to racing during the Oaklawn Park meet, said her trainer, Donnie Von Hemel.