03/14/2003 12:00AM

N.Y. breeding: Racing to remember New York's bravest


Rescue Five, a New York-bred 3-year-old filly, has a big cheering section in Staten Island, N.Y.

A daughter of New York sire A. P. Jet, Rescue Five is named for a Staten Island firehouse that lost 11 firefighters during the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.

Rescue Five, who won a statebred maiden race in her second start on March 2 at Aqueduct, is owned by Paul Pompa Jr. and trained by Rene Araya. Pompa wished to recognize the lost firefighters and named the filly after their firehouse. Pompa bought her for $25,000 at auction as a yearling.

Pompa's cousin, Jerry McClenin, who is Pompa's partner in his racing interests, lost a couple of friends from Rescue 5 in the terrorist attacks. Pompa is donating 10 percent of Rescue Five's net lifetime earnings to the Rescue 5 Family Fund, a charity created by the firehouse's surviving firefighters.

"We wanted to find a way to pay tribute to the firefighters and their families and thought this would be a fun way to do it," said Pompa, who became an owner three years ago. Rescue Five's maiden win, he said, "was a big feeling. I'm not looking for recognition - it's about the connections the horse has now."

Pompa, 44, said Rescue Five's win was rewarding because the filly had to be nursed back to health at Cornell University after suffering from a serious lung infection after finishing 12th in her first start last October.

Last year, Pompa, who is a partner in his family's business in Brooklyn, Truck-Rite Distribution, had a big thrill when his New York-bred Textbook Method won the Yaddo at Saratoga. Unfortunately, after finishing third in the Montauk at Aqueduct on Dec. 1, Textbook Method was euthanized when she injured herself in a training accident at Belmont Park.

Perhaps Rescue Five will develop into a stakes horse for Pompa, which surely would put smiles on a lot of faces at Rescue 5 in Staten Island.

Dancin Renee drops Tiznow colt

Dancin Renee, New York-bred horse of the year in 1997 and a half-sister to Say Florida Sandy, foaled a colt from the first crop of two-time Eclipse Award winner Tiznow on March 8.

The New York-bred colt was born at James and Lorna Mack's Silvernails Farm in Pine Plains. Sanford Bacon, who bred Dancin Renee and Say Florida Sandy, is the breeder of the Tiznow colt.

Mike Tobin, farm manager at Silvernails, said the Tiznow colt, Dancin Renee's fifth foal, has Hollywood looks.

"He looks like Robert Redford and moves like Fred Astaire," Tobin said.

Dancin Renee, who also earned New York-bred honors as champion older female and sprinter in 1997, campaigned for Bacon and earned $497,546 during her racing career. Dancin Renee's dam, Lolli Lucka Lolli, New York's broodmare of the year on three occasions, who also raced for Bacon, died in 2001 while carrying a full sibling to Say Florida Sandy.

Bacon initially raced Say Florida Sandy, a son of one New York's leading stallions, Personal Flag, before losing him through the claim box. Now owned by John Rotella, Say Florida Sandy, the 2001 New York-bred Horse of the Year, is the all-time leading New York-bred in earnings with $2,006,537.

Dancin Renee, a daughter of another top New York sire, Distinctive Pro, was Lolli Lucka Lolli's second starter.

Among the seven stakes won by Dancin Renee were the Grade 3 Honorable Miss at Saratoga in stakes-record time; the Straight Deal Breeders' Cup at Laurel Park; and Aqueduct's Berlo and Broadway handicaps. She retired with 14 wins from 21 starts.

Dancin Renee's first foal was a Wild Again filly, Swing Again, who sold for $140,000 at Keeneland's 2000 September yearling sale and won against open company at Belmont Park as a 2-year-old.

A 2-year-old half-brother to the Tiznow colt sold for $575,000 last month at Fasig-Tipton's select Calder sale. A Kentucky-bred Dixieland Band colt, he was bought owner E. Paul Robsham.

Bacon will breed Dancin Renee to Kentucky sire Unbridled's Song this year.