09/06/2012 2:57PM

Northlands: Cardinal Zin looks sharp for Saturday feature


Cardinal Zin is stepping up in class off a loss, but he still looks like a major player in a $15,000 claiming race for 3-year-olds and up at Northlands Park on Saturday. The 6 1/2-furlong sprint drew seven well-matched horses and goes as the seventh race.

Cardinal Zin, trained by Tom Rycroft, won his two previous races before losing by a neck to Lyons Growl in a $10,000 claiming race going six furlongs Aug. 25. With any kind of a trip, he would be coming into Saturday’s race looking for his fourth straight win.

Ridden by Scott Williams, Cardinal Zin was squeezed back early in his last race, and when it looked like he was going to make a move along the rail approaching the quarter pole, he had nowhere to go. Williams found room on the turn, and despite going extremely wide, Cardinal Zin finished full of run to just miss.

Cardinal Zin is versatile, and Williams has the option of putting him into the race right from the start or easing him into a stalking position behind Shifty Sheriff and Desert Train.

Shifty Sheriff won three races in a row at Prairie Meadows before finishing third behind Lyons Growl and Cardinal Zin in his first start at Northlands. It was his first start for trainer Twylla Bensmiller and his last for Bensmiller as he was claimed by trainer Diana Feuerheim, who was acting on behalf of Randy MacDonald.

Shifty Sheriff drew the rail, and it is likely jockey Stephan Heiler will be sending him right to the lead. He is certainly eligible to move forward in his second start in Canada.

Feuerheim also has entered Inquisitive Son, a horse she claimed for herself and MacDonald out of a $15,000 nonwinners-of-two on Aug. 10. She is taking the blinkers off following his second-place finish as the favorite.

Desert Train won the last time he ran for $15,000 and will appreciate the easier company after dueling and fading in a $22,000 claiming race Sept. 1.

Indian Love has won two of his last three for $10,000 and won’t mind the move back to a sprint after winning a one-mile $10,000 claiming race Aug. 22.

Against the Tide had a wide trip in the same race Desert Train exits and should improve in his second start back following a two-month layoff.

The 4-year-old filly Yes It’s Jackie rounds out the field.