11/07/2005 12:00AM

Perigee Girl tries two turns

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ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Perigee Girl will try to stretch out her tactical speed around two turns Wednesday at Woodbine in the $125,000 South Ocean Stakes.

Perigee Girl could be a short-priced favorite in the 1 1/16-mile race for Ontario-sired 2-year-old fillies. In her second time out, she had one of the more impressive maiden-winning performances of the meeting on Sept. 4, scoring by nine lengths after being geared down late. Her 5 1/2-furlong time of 1:04.20 translated into an 84 Beyer Speed Figure.

Perigee Girl was rated in a stalking position outside her fast stablemate, U R Flashy, in the Oct. 5 Victorian Queen Stakes. She took control early in the stretch of that Ontario-sire sprint, and won by a length with a 73 Beyer.

Jockey Jim McAleney said Perigee Girl rated kindly for him in the Victorian Queen, which was what he and trainer Reade Baker were banking on.

"I was really impressed with her," McAleney said. He and Baker both agreed when they discussed strategy for the Victorian Queen that Perigee Girl was more apt to rate than U R Flashy.

"They always settle better when you have a good pace to run at, and being outside made all the difference," McAleney said. "You have a better chance of rating young, inexperienced horses when you're outside."

Perigee Girl, who drilled five-eighths in a bullet 59.40 seconds over the main track last Friday, has a sprint-oriented pedigree. She should be forwardly placed after breaking from the outside post in the 10-horse field.

Other contenders include Belle of Ascot and La Gran Marylin.

Belle of Ascot has run hot and cold in five starts for trainer Mike DePaulo. She won her maiden third time out on the front end over a muddy track in an Ontario-sire maiden special, but was subsequently far back in the Muskoka, a seven-furlong stakes for local yearling sale graduates.

DePaulo said throat surgery may have helped Belle of Ascot prior to her most recent outing on the grass, when she finished third in a seven-furlong allowance, earning a 67 Beyer.

"We operated on her throat after she stopped in the yearling sale stakes," DePaulo said. "She got the best Beyer of her life and ran a much better race the last time she ran. She got in a bit of trouble down on the fence, but I thought she showed some courage."

La Gran Marylin rallied for second in the Victorian Queen, and was fourth in Belle of Ascot's last start.