09/22/2011 11:33AM

Northlands allowance a nice soft spot for Fleet Attack


Fleet Attack, fifth in the Grade 3, $300,000 Canadian Derby in his last start, is going to appreciate the much easier company he will be facing in a first-level allowance race for 3-year-olds that headlines a 10-race card at Northlands Park Saturday. The one-mile race drew six horses and it will be interesting to see how Fleet Attack bounces back from the grueling 1 3/8-mile Canadian Derby Aug. 20.

The Canadian Derby can be a hard race on horses and this year was no exception. None of the six horses that have raced since made much of an impact in their next start, and the winner, Freedoms Traveller, came out of the race with a hairline fracture of his left front ankle and is done for the year.

Fleet Attack could be the exception. Trained by Joan Petrowski, Fleet Attack has had more than a month to recover and he earned bullets for his two half-mile workouts Sept. 8 and 17.

Fleet Attacked romped by 10 1/4 lengths in a one-mile maiden special weight race before unsuccessfully tackling stakes horses in the $50,000 Count Lathum and Canadian Derby. He fits a lot better with first-level horses and he should get a ground-saving trip leaving from the rail with Fernando Perez aboard.

Navajo Knight is the only horse in the field to have beaten winners. Trained by Dale Greenwood, Navajo Knight came from off the pace to win a $15,000 claiming race for nonwinners of two Sept. 14. He was coming off a third-place finish in the $25,000 Alberta Derby, which was contested over grass at Alberta Downs July 24. Third in the race Fleet Attack won by over 10 lengths, Navajo Knight appears to have improved since then.

Cat’s Axe could be dangerous as the main speed. Trained by Monica Russell, Cat’s Axe set quick fractions and held off Canadian Friday to win a maiden special weight race going six furlongs Sept. 16.

Canadian Friday was getting to Cat’s Axe and he shouldn’t mind the added distance. Trained by Linda Whiedon, Canadian Friday rallied to finish third in a one-mile maiden special weight race in his previous start.

Trumpeters Song showed more speed in his win over Da Boss in a $12,000 maiden claiming race Sept. 10. The Jim Meyaard trainee is making just his third start and could have significant upside potential.

Vicar’s Ice Pick rounds out the field.