09/24/2009 12:00AM

Northlands allowance looks like match race


Trainer Jim Meyaard was planning on taking Salt Flat Speed and Scorewithcater to Hastings this Sunday. Salt Flat Speed was going to run in the $50,000 Bar & Grill Express, and Scorewithcater would have been one of the favorites in the $275,000 British Columbia Derby. When Scorewithcater developed an abscess in one of his feet and couldn't make the trip, Meyaard decided to keep Salt Flat Speed at Northlands Park and run him in an allowance race Saturday which drew five horses. The 6 1/2-furlong feature also attracted multiple sprint stakes winner Inuit Fisher, and it looks like a battle from start to finish between the two horses.

Salt Flat Speed and Inuit Fisher ran against each other in a one-mile $40,000 optional race on Sept. 9, and they hooked up right from the start. Salt Flat Speed was able to put away Inuit Fisher but paid the price and was caught at the wire by Smile N Wave. Salt Flat Speed drew the rail and it is likely Rico Walcott will be sending him right to the front.

Inuit Fisher, trained by Dale Saunders, could have the edge breaking from post 4. Jockey Quincy Welch should have some options, and if Salt Flat Speed doesn't break sharply Inuit Fisher could be the one they have to catch. Inuit Fisher could also be tough from a stalking position if It's Good to Be Me goes with Salt Flat Speed.

I'm the Guy probably wants more distance and could have a hard time shortening up to a sprint after finishing third in the 1 3/8-mile Speed to Spare on Sept. 6. Footprint rounds out the field.