10/01/2011 4:26PM

Penn National: Out-of-towners look ready


Indian Jones and Mine Train, a pair of 4-year-old out-of-towners who within their last three starts narrowly missed clearing their second allowance condition, will try to get the job done when they make their Penn National main-track debuts in Tuesday night’s featured third race.

Parx Racing shipper Indian Jones and Mine Train, formerly based in Kentucky with trainer Neil Howard, will break alongside each other in posts 1 and 2 in the second-level optional $25,000 claimer that will be contested at 1 1/16 miles.

Trainer Phil Aristone has gotten great results from Indian Jones since transferring the son of Smarty Jones from turf to the main track. Indian Jones romped by five lengths in a nonwinners-of-two allowance in late July, then returned on Sept. 20 to miss by a head as the third-place finisher in a three-horse photo.

Aristone shows a good 11-for-47 record (23 percent) the past two years with horses coming back in 14 days or less in a route after finishing in the money.

Both of Indian Jones’s last two races produced Beyer Speed Figures (85-83) that are close to the par of 84 for Tuesday night’s class level at Penn National.

Mine Train held a slight lead with a furlong remaining in a 1 1/8-mile second-level allowance at Churchill Downs three starts ago. He regressed from an 81 Beyer to a 75 in his next start, then was non-competitive making his first start on turf at Saratoga in August.

Mine Train is now in the barn of the Maryland-based Chris Grove, who shows a 5-for-28 record (18 percent) with new acquisitions making their first start for him following a break of 31 to 60 days.

Valerius raced on the same May 20 Churchill card as Mine Train. He was claimed that day out of a winning effort against $30,000 conditioned claimers. Since moving to Peter Walder’s barn at Monmouth Park, Valerius has nearly paired up his Beyers (83-81) in two starts.

Most recently, Valerius was beaten two lengths locally at the same level as Tuesday night’s race. That Aug. 23 event turned out to be a key race, in which three horses, including winner Pound Foolish, came back to win next time out.

The seven-horse field also includes Quail Hollow, a wire-to-wire winner of first-level allowance 3 1/2 weeks ago, and Evil Commander, an eight-time winner who is part of an uncoupled entry for the track’s second-leading trainer, Murray Rojas.