06/05/2001 11:00PM

Norman puts Unrullah Bull in exclusive company


GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - Trainer Cole Norman, who figures he has claimed about 130 horses in the past five years, considers Unrullah Bull, an allowance winner last Sunday at Lone Star Park, one of his top four claims ever, along with King and Hart, Code Six, and Stirling Bridge.

Norman claimed Unrullah Bull for $25,000 on May 3 at Lone Star on behalf of owner James Donnan. Unrullah Bull won that afternoon, running seven furlongs in a track-record time of 1:21.21. In his first start for Norman, Unrullah Bull won a 1 1/16-mile allowance race Sunday by 2 1/2 lengths. Among those he defeated were T.B. Track Star, a multiple stakes winner of $432,160; Snuck In, a Grade 3 winner of $534,430; Chief Three Sox, a multiple stakes winner of $347,600; and Chris's Bad Boy, a stakes winner of $112,050.

Norman was impressed most with the manner in which Unrullah Bull won Sunday, as he was blocked and had to come around horses in the stretch. "He got in a lot of trouble and still just swooped around them and made it look easy," said Norman.

Norman said Unrullah Bull would be pointed to the $75,000 Bob Johnson Memorial at Lone Star on July 15, a race in which he will again face T.B. Track Star, the stake's defending champ.

Unrullah Bull still has a way to go before he accomplishes as much as Norman's other top claims. Code Six, a $25,000 claim, won the Prelude and Bossier City Handicap for Norman in 1998 at Louisiana Downs. Stirling Bridge was a $50,000 claim who went on to win three stakes for Norman - the Delicada and Sangue at Louisiana Downs, and the Carris Memorial at Remington Park - all in 2000.

King and Hart never won a stakes for Norman, but was one of the most popular runners in the Mid-South. King and Hart, who was retired this spring, won 26 of his 83 career starts and earned of $302,272. Norman first claimed King and Hart, now 9, for $18,000 and won at least $200,000 with him before losing him and later claiming him back. King and Hart, who was featured on "Good Morning America," won five races at Louisiana Downs in 1997 and was named the meet's champion claimer. He now resides at Shannon Farm in Darlene, La.

Options for Royal Spy

Norman said that Royal Spy, who earned a 108 Beyer Speed Figure for his 9 1/2-length win in the $200,000 Diamond "A" USA Stakes on turf May 28, is being considered for three turf races: the $300,000 Dallas Turf Cup for 3-year-olds and up June 16 at Lone Star; the $125,000 Grand Prairie Turf Challenge for 3-year-olds July 3 at Lone Star; or the Grade 2 $200,000 Arlington Classic for 3-year-olds on turf June 30 at Arlington Park.

Norman added that Sweet and Firm, who finished second to Hallowed Dreams in the $100,000 Valid Expectations Stakes on May 28, is being pointed to the $75,000 Miller Lite Stakes at Lone Star on June 23.

On Friday Norman saddles My Sky Beauty, against seven others in a competitive one-mile allowance worth $31,000. The second-leading trainer at Lone Star, Norman has been winning races at a 43 percent clip.