08/01/2001 11:00PM

No matter where, 'Brilliant' runs big


OCEANPORT, N.J. - Beyond Brilliant has been first or second in 10 out of his 11 lifetime starts. Coming off a second-place finish in the $250,000 Carry Back Stakes at Calder, he figures to be a solid favorite in Saturday's $75,000 Rumson Stakes, a six-furlong race for 3-year-olds at Monmouth Park.

Beyond Brilliant, trained by Greg Gilchrist, has been a model of consistency, firing his best at six different racetracks across the country. He has won stakes at Delaware Park, Bay Meadows, Golden Gate, and Santa Anita. Three starts back, he was second to Squirtle Squirt in an allowance at Hollywood Park. In the Legal Light Stakes at Delaware on June 2, he defeated a field that included Sea of Green, who will be one of Beyond Brilliant's main competitors. Beyond Brilliant will be ridden by regular rider Ronnie Warren Jr., who will probably place the colt slightly off an expected hot pace.

Sea of Green, trained and owned by Janis Gerace, has run second to City Zip in two of his last three starts. In the Grade 3 Jersey Shore Breeders' Cup here July 4, he was defeated by City Zip but finished ahead of Grade 1 winner Songandaprayer. The Jersey Shore was his first start over the Monmouth strip, and he has trained exceptionally here since the race. Chuck Lopez gets the call.

"He is very comfortable here," Gerace said. "He likes the track here and that is always an advantage."

The Raise a Cup Handicap at Delaware on June 25 has produced three starters for the Rumson. The winner of the race, Smile My Lord, sat behind a rapid pace to close and win going away by 4 1/4 lengths under Travis Dunkelberger, who is named on the colt for Saturday. Smile My Lord, trained by Dale Capuano, has finished in the money in seven career starts, and has won his last two races. If he gets the similar fractions up front, he should be able to duplicate his recent performance.

Unreal Party set the hot early fractions in the Raise a Cup but could not seriously challenge Smile My Lord in the stretch and finished second. Forest Heir, the 2-1 favorite in that race, never fired and finished fourth.

Copper Country, Beau's Surprise, Be Nasty, and Run Kush Run complete the field.

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