07/24/2003 11:00PM

New millionaire Mysterious Affair gets no rest


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Mysterious Affair is a millionaire now, after winning the $140,000 Rainbow Connection at Fort Erie on July 19.

But that lofty status isn't about to lead to a pampered lifestyle as Mysterious Affair is slated to swing back into action here next Saturday, in the $150,000 Royal North, a six-furlong turf race for fillies and mares.

"She's never missed a check," said Mort Hardy, owner, trainer, and breeder of the 6-year-old mare. "If she does, maybe I'd retire her.

"She's not quite as good as she was as a 3- and 4-year-old, but she's still pretty good. If she can make $100,000 a year, why wouldn't I just go ahead and make it?"

That sum would seem a conservative estimate, as Mysterious Affair already has banked $177,553 this year after picking up $84,000 in the Rainbow Connection.

Her record now stands at 12 wins, eight seconds and four thirds from 31 starts. And she has, indeed, never missed a payday, having always finished fifth or better.

Anglian Prince in Seagram Cup next

Anglian Prince, the other big horse in the Hardy barn, is slated to see action in next Sunday's $125,000 Seagram Cup, a 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-olds and upward.

A 4-year-old gelding owned by Len Prussky, Anglian Prince is coming off a second-place behind Wake at Noon in last Sunday's Izvestia, also at 1 1/16 miles.

"He ran a very good race," said Hardy. "Wake at Noon is one of the best horses we've had around here in a long while, and I don't think it's any disgrace to get beat by him. When he runs his race, he's beat a lot of nice horses."

Wando: No Mobil to worry about

Mobil, who is coming off a game win here in the July 12 Toronto Cup, breezed five furlongs in 1:00.40 under jockey Todd Kabel on the main track here Friday and could make his next start south of the border.

"We're kind of leaning toward the West Virginia Derby," said Mike Keogh, who trains Mobil for owner-breeder Gustav Schickedanz.

The Grade 3, $600,000 West Virginia Derby, a 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-olds, will be run at Mountaineer Park on Aug. 9.

On that same date Keogh plans to be here at Woodbine to saddle Wando, who will be looking to complete a sweep of the Canadian Triple Crown in the $500,000 Breeders' Stakes.

Wando was a commanding winner of the first two legs of the series, the 1 1/4-mile Queen's Plate here June 22 and the 1 3/16-mile Prince of Wales at Fort Erie July 20.

Mobil also is nominated to the Breeders' but is not about to scuttle his Schickedanz stablemate's shot at the $500,000 bonus and $50,000 breeders' award he would get for winning the Canadian Triple Crown.

Strizzi works fast

Strizzi, runner-up in the Toronto Cup over 1 1/8 miles of turf, tuned up for the Breeders' here Friday with a five-furlong drill in 58.80 seconds, fastest of the 29 workouts at that distance on the training track turf course.

Jockey Emile Ramsammy was aboard for the drill and has the call for the Breeders' on Strizzi, who is owned by Stronach Stable and trained by Malcolm Pierce.

Seeking the Ring tunes up

Seeking the Ring worked under his regular rider Todd Kabel on the turf here Friday, going seven furlongs in 1:26.40, and is on target for the $250,000 Wonder Where here Monday, Aug. 4.

The Wonder Where, a 1 1/4-mile turf race for Canadian-bred 3-year-old fillies, is the final leg of the Canadian Triple Tiara, which carries a $350,000 bonus but will not be swept this year.

Too Late Now won the opening leg of the series, the Labatt Woodbine Oaks here June 8, but then finished third in Fort Erie's Bison City, the second leg, on July 1. She is freshening up on the farm of her trainer, Jim Day, with an eye toward a fall campaign.

Seeking the Ring, who finished second in the Oaks, came back to dead heat for win with Brattothecore in the Bison City, and will be making her turf debut in the Wonder Where.

Brattothecore, owned by Jam Jar Racing Stable and trained by John Ross, also has not raced on grass, but worked five furlongs in 1:00 on the turf training course last Sunday in preparation for the Wonder Where. "I liked the way she worked," said Ross. "She's healthy and she's happy; there's no reason we shouldn't take a shot."

Arco's Gold, who was eighth in the Queen's Plate but second behind Wando in the Prince of Wales, could try turf for the first time in the Breeders'.

"He redeemed himself a bit," said Ross, who trains Arco's Gold for Alex and Steven DiIorio. "We'll see how he works on the grass."

* Hard-luck apprentice rider Sunny Singh, who returned to action here July 4 after missing more than two months with a broken collarbone, suffered a new fracture, close to the original, in a training mishap last week and will be sidelined indefinitely. Don Parente, who has been representing Singh, took over the book of journeyman Greg Hutton.

* Jockey Rui Pimentel, who has been off since May 23 after suffering a broken ankle in a starting gate accident, is slated to return to action this Wednesday.