07/14/2006 12:00AM

Now the real test for Anew


ELMONT, N.Y. - Anew has taken the fast track from low-level claimer to graded-stakes winner. But if he is to join the short list of elite sprinters in the country, he will have to derail Silver Train over his favorite surface.

Anew will get that chance Sunday, when he squares off against Silver Train and five others in a terrific renewal of the Grade 2, $150,000 at Belmont Park. A field of seven was entered for the seven-furlong Tom Fool, including quality sprinters Sir Greeley, War Front, and Big Apple Daddy.

Since being gelded last winter, Anew has gone 4 for 4. The streak began in a $25,000 claiming race and continued through last month's Grade 2 True North Handicap, in which he ran six furlongs in 1:08.10.

Toby Sheets, who is overseeing suspended trainer Steve Asmussen's Belmont stable, said that performance announced Anew's presence in the sprint division.

"We were just hoping for him to run his race, and he did," Sheets said. "I think he belongs until proven otherwise."

Anew has raced exclusively at six furlongs during his streak. Sheets said he doesn't think the added furlong will be a problem. Alan Garcia rides Anew from post 5.

Silver Train enters the Tom Fool off a neck victory in the Grade 1 Metropolitan Handicap. That was his fourth consecutive victory at Belmont Park, where last year he won the Jerome and Breeders' Cup Sprint. Richard Dutrow Jr. said he is focusing on the Tom Fool and the Grade 1 Vosburgh at Belmont in the fall. For now, Dutrow said, the Breeders' Cup Sprint at Churchill Downs "is not even something I'm looking at or even dreaming about."

At 121 pounds, Silver Train will spot Anew five pounds. Edgar Prado rides Silver Train from the rail.

"We're ready to go," Dutrow said. "We're putting everything we have into this race. He's on top of his game right now, and I'm very happy to have him that way, because he's not that way all the time."

When asked about facing Anew, Dutrow said, "If he beats Silver Train, they've got an awfully nice horse on their hands."

Sir Greeley, who won the Westchester, is capable of rebounding from his fourth-place finish to Silver Train in the Met Mile. War Front, trained by Allen Jerkens, shows a strong work tab for his first race in five months. Big Apple Daddy won the Donald LeVine Memorial Handicap at Philadelphia Park last out after finishing third in the Grade 1 Carter. Mach Speed and Voodoo complete the field.