05/07/2008 11:00PM

Pat of Gold the latest ace for Jarvis


VANCOUVER, British Columbia - Trainer Pat Jarvis is hoping to pull off a small upset with Pat of Gold in the $50,000 Brighouse Belles at Hastings on Saturday.

Although Pat of Gold has technically never won a stakes race, she certainly belongs in the Brighouse Belles. A 4-year-old filly by Regal Remark, Pat of Gold closed out her 3-year-old year with a couple of strong performances just seven days apart.

An Alberta-bred filly by Regal Remark, Pat of Gold ran a huge race to finish a close second behind Alpine Garden in the Grade 3 British Columbia Breeders' Cup Oaks Sept. 22. In the Alberta Oaks on Sept. 29, she romped, checking in 6 1/2 lengths in front of Bear Nobility. Unfortunately for her owner, Ben Zenari, she was disqualified for causing interference going down the backstretch.

"We were very surprised her number came down," said Jarvis. "We thought the inquiry was about an incident that happened at the starting gate, and we knew she wasn't involved. The tote board blocked our view of the backstretch. It was too bad, because we had put a lot of pressure on her to bring her back that quickly. Of course we knew it was going to be a lot easier than the B.C. Oaks because it was restricted to Alberta-breds. We also knew it was going to be her final start of the year."

Pat of Gold was bred by Zenari, and Jarvis feels fortunate to train for him.

"He has been in the business for a long time, and he's had a lot of really nice horses," Jarvis said. "He also likes to take his time with horses, so you never feel like you have to push his young ones."

Jarvis recalls having to pass a small test before Zenari started sending her some of his better horses.

"The first horse he sent me had a bowed tendon, was a bit crazy, and he had never beaten a horse," she said. "I wasn't sure why he would spend the gas money to send him here. The first time he started for me he finished fourth. After the race Mr. Zenari told me that all he had to do was beat one horse in order for me to get the job."

According to Jarvis, Zenari was attracted to her because of the work she had done with Kavil, a marathon horse she trained in the mid-1990s. Jarvis's reputation as being a good hand with a route horse was enhanced when she won a couple of marathon races with Crescent Remark, a half-brother to Pat of Gold, as both are out of Glance's Gold. Over a career that began in 1976, Jarvis has won with over 14 percent of her route starters.

"Just about everything out of that mare could run," said Jarvis. "Crescent Remark was one of the cheaper ones, but he was still a pretty nice horse. I was pretty sure Pat of Gold was going to improve when she stretched out."

Pat of Gold has not finished worse than third in her seven-race career, and, according to Jarvis, she is a very sharp horse right now.

"She just loves to train," said Jarvis. "I don't know if sprinting is really her game, but she couldn't be doing any better."

True Metropolitan maintaining form

Another horse who appears to be thriving is True Metropolitan. Trained by Terry Jordan, True Metropolitan was very impressive in his win over Spaghetti Mouse in the $52,262 George Royal Stakes last Saturday.

True Metropolitan has been the champion older horse in Canada the past two years, and considering how easily he won his first start at the meet, he could be well on his way to a third consecutive Sovereign Award. He also set a track record for six furlongs of 1.09.87 good for a 97 Beyer over a track rated good in the George Royal.

"He continues to amaze me," said Jordan. "Just when you think he's done it all, he adds something to his resume."

According to Jordan, True Metropolitan came out of his race in excellent shape, but he wasn't sure where or when he would make his next start.

"I would like to run him here at least one more time before we ship him to Woodbine," he said.

With his win in the George Royal, True Metropolitan inched closer to the $1 million mark in career earnings. His total now stands at $948,295.

Dancing Allstar still fresh

Dancing Allstar, another Sovereign Award winner in Jordan's barn, came out of her easy win in the Mount Royal Stakes at Stampede Park last Sunday in good shape and will likely make her next start in the $50,000 Emerald Downs Stakes at Hastings May 17. Dancing Allstar was voted the top 2-year-old filly in Canada last year.

The Mount Royal was billed as a match race between Dancing Allstar and Littlemiss Allison, who was undefeated going into the race.

It turned out to be little more than a public workout for Dancing Allstar as she cruised to a 5 1/2-length win.

"We weren't sure if we wanted to run her back in two weeks in the Emerald Downs, said Jordan, "but it didn't take a lot out of her, so we might as well run her back there."