07/05/2007 12:00AM

Next races undecided for Dwyer 1-2


ELMONT, N.Y. - From a speed-figure standpoint, both Any Given Saturday and Nobiz Like Shobiz ran the best race of their careers finishing first and second in Wednesday's Grade 2 Dwyer Stakes at Belmont Park.

Considering who their competition figures to be the next time they run, both Any Given Saturday and Nobiz Like Shobiz may have to step up their games yet again. Any Given Saturday earned a 110 Beyer Speed Figure winning the Dwyer by four lengths over Nobiz Like Shobiz, who earned a 103. It was the first time Nobiz Like Shobiz cracked the triple-digit Beyer Speed Figure mark.

The next set of major races in the 3-year-old division includes the $500,000 Jim Dandy at Saratoga on July 29 and the $1 million Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park on Aug. 5. Both are stepping-stones to the $1 million Travers at Saratoga on Aug. 25. It is expected that Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense is going to run in the Jim Dandy while Preakness winner Curlin is headed to the Haskell. Belmont Stakes winner Rags to Riches, who runs next in the Coaching Club American Oaks against fillies on July 21, is possible for the Travers, but also is a candidate for the Alabama a week earlier.

Neither Todd Pletcher, the trainer of Any Given Saturday, nor Barclay Tagg, the trainer of Nobiz Like Shobiz, were ready to make commitments with their colts on Thursday morning. Both men said their horses came out of the race well.

While Nobiz Like Shobiz is already a Grade 1 winner - he won the Wood Memorial in April - Any Given Saturday's goal for the summer is to win a Grade 1. Though Pletcher feels Any Given Saturday has done enough to be pointed to the Travers, it's possible he could focus on the Haskell as his main objective because it's run at 1 1/8 miles not 1 1/4 miles.

"It's a close call," Pletcher said. "If the focus is on the Haskell then you obviously go to the Haskell. If the focus is on the Travers then I think he would benefit from a little extra time between the Jim Dandy and the Travers."

The last two winners of the Jim Dandy - Flower Alley and Bernardini - have gone on to win the Travers, perhaps benefiting from an extra week between races.

Nobiz Like Shobiz was in striking position of Any Given Saturday at the quarter pole, but couldn't accelerate when the other horse did.

"I thought my horse would run on by him, he didn't," Tagg said. "I thought my horse would finish better."

Tagg said he would wait a few days before deciding what his next move is. In addition to the Jim Dandy and Haskell, another possibility is the $750,000 West Virginia Derby to be run at Mountaineer Park on Aug. 4.

"I think this race will move him forward, he's a husky horse," Tagg said. "Maybe he needed more work. I don't think he did."

Shug McGaughey, trainer of Dwyer third-place finisher Sightseeing, said he would point his colt to the Jim Dandy, believing he'll benefit from the switch to two turns.

"I thought he ran okay," McGaughey said. "He wasn't going to beat the winner, I would have liked to have seen him be more competitive for second but he wasn't. Hopefully we can get him up [to Saratoga] and run him around two turns and it'll make a difference. His best race so far has been around two turns."

High Finance targeting Forego

High Finance, the 2 3/4-length victor in Wednesday's Grade 2 Tom Fool Handicap, will be pointed to the Grade 1 Forego at Saratoga on Sept. 1, trainer Rick Violette said.

Violette said High Finance came out of the race a bit "tired," but otherwise was in good order Thursday morning. High Finance ran seven furlongs in 1:21.81 and earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 111. He was coming off an allowance win in which he earned a 115 Beyer.

Violette said he does not want to shorten High Finance up to six furlongs in a race like the Alfred G. Vanderbilt on July 28 and believes the timing to the Forego is perfect.

"He loves to run fresh," Violette said. "We can have our cake and eat it too. Run fresh and have a target."

John Kimmel, trainer of Awesome Twist, was happy with his horse's second-place finish considering he had not run since December. Kimmel is considering stretching his horse out to 1 1/8 miles in the Grade 1, $750,000 Whitney Handicap on July 28.

"The handicap division is on the light side without Premium Tap and Invasor," Kimmel said. "I'm not impressed with the California contingent of horses. Maybe this horse could have something to say in the handicap division."

Nick Zito said Commentator, who finished third after being pressed through a half-mile in 43.99 seconds, came out of the race in good order and would be pointed to the Forego.

Funny Cide eyes Saratoga Sunrise

Though Tagg may have been disappointed with Nobiz Like Shobiz's second-place finish in the Dwyer, he was thrilled with Funny Cide's three-length victory in the $100,000 Wadsworth Memorial at Finger Lakes.

It was the first victory for Funny Cide since last July's Dominion Day Handicap. Though the Finger Lakes track was labeled fast, it had plenty of moisture in it.

"It looked like he hated it every step of the way, the jock said he hated it," Tagg said. Johnie Bye Night "had run some triple-digit Beyers and Funny Cide beat him rather easily when he leveled off and started running."

Tagg said he would like to point Funny Cide to the $80,000 Saratoga Sunrise, an overnight stakes at Saratoga scheduled for Aug. 11. The race is restricted to New York-breds at 1 1/8 miles.

Tagg has Duda covered

In addition to the Grade 1 Prioress, there are two overnight stakes on Saturday's card.

Tagg seems to have all the bases covered in the $75,000 Duda at 1 1/16 miles on the turf. He entered Stormy Kiss and Dance Away Capote on the turf and Mo Cuishle if the race is moved to the dirt.

Stormy Kiss came within a neck of Masseuse in the Grade 3 Beaugay then was fourth in the Steal a Kiss when wheeled back on three weeks' rest.

Dance Away Capote, a daughter of Capote, is trying the turf for the first time.

"We galloped her on it a couple of times and it looked like she likes it," Tagg said. "I like horses to move to another level if they can and I'm hoping she can do that on the turf."

In the $75,000 Crockadore for New York-bred 3-year-old fillies, Jesse's Justice, trained by Pletcher, looks like the one to beat.